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Free Exploration in Nature and the Danger of Inappropriate EE – A preliminary study

November 25, 9:00 am - 11:00 am

Join us for the sixth meeting of the International Workshop on Environment, Sustainability, and Education

Title: Free Exploration in Nature and the Danger of Inappropriate EE – A preliminary study

Speakers: Sándor Csonka & Attila Varga

Date: Thursday November 25th, 2020

  • 9 am/09:00 New York
  • 4 pm/16:00 Tel Aviv
  • 3 pm/ 15:00 Berlin
  • 9 pm / 21:00 Beijing

Register in advance for this workshop


Nowadays, Environmental Education programs primarily provide opportunities for organized teaching and studying controlled by educators. As far as free explorational experiences in nature are concerned, their positive effects on the development of environmental consciousness are often overlooked. This presentation summarizes the key findings of our study (Csonka and Varga, 2019) based on which free explorational experiences in nature should be made a very important part of children’s life so that they can later develop a strong ecological identity. Interestingly, the firmly structured EE programs are more likely to trigger negative emotions towards nature. Also a surprising result will be presented that it is likely that the programs of eco-schools contain less free exploration in nature than programs of non-eco-schools (based on Csonka, 2019). Finally, we are also going to demonstrate the implementation possibilities of free exploration in nature in curricular and extracurricular programs, especially in PE education, sporting events and camps (based on Csonka, 2020).

This virtual workshop provides a venue for scholars and graduate students worldwide to share their research, to discuss work in progress, and to network with other like-minded individuals interested in the intersection of environment, sustainability, and education. Every session feature one short presentation (15-18 minutes) followed by small group discussion and Q&A. The workshop meets once a month throughout the year. For more information, please contact Oren Pizmony-Levy (op2183@tc.columbia.edu) and Dafna Gan (dafna.gan@smkb.ac.il).

To request disability-related accommodations, contact OASID at oasid@tc.edu(212) 678-3689(646) 755-3144 video phone, as early as possible.

If the event you would like to attend is happening live or you would like to view a video of a past live event, please contact OASID to arrange for accommodations, including live captioning services.


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