Updated: Mar 23
“When you educate one person you can change a life, when you educate many you can change the world” - Shai Reshef
The covid-19 pandemic has reshaped our Earth in many ways. People have seen how beautiful Earth can be when people wind down for a while from their busy life. At one time, air pollution in the big city decreased significantly due to lockdown and quarantine. A clear blue sky and wildlife return to the urban area. Nature has never been so close, yet we can only see them through our windows. However, the magical time only lasts for a while before the harsh reality hits.
During COVID-19, people do everything from their home from working, learning, and spending leisure time. Most of the activity depends on electronic devices. It can be a mobile phone or laptop. Hence, electricity usage increases and impacts the carbon footprint for countries that utilize fossil fuels to generate electricity. Furthermore, there is also an increase in medical waste that polluted the planet due to improper handling, especially surgical masks. Pandemic shows us the beauty of nature, yet we still harm the environment.
Education is the best experience one can have to broaden perspective and shift behaviour, especially when given an early age. However, covid-19 also halts and decreases the quality of education due to a sudden transition to online learning. According to the UN, almost 1.6 billion learners in more than 190 countries and all continents are affected. Parents struggle to assist their children in learning from home because they need to balance work from home. Besides education, children also got disconnected from nature. The education crisis received so much attention from the best educators around the world. At this time is where technology comes to the rescue.
Organizations and educators united to provide the best online learning experience to be accessed by anyone at any time. UNEP also addresses the disconnection of children from nature from the early pandemic in 2020. Hence, UNEP, TedEd, and other organizations collaborated with experts to launch Earth School 一 click here to go to the great beyond!
UNEP, TedEd, and over 30 organizations supported more than 50 experts in environment and education to create an integrated learning platform for all ages learners worldwide. They are concerned about education quality and student connection with nature during a pandemic. Therefore, they compiled and arranged many great resources into 30 days quests for students worldwide to celebrate, explore, and connect with nature. The adventure began on April 22, 2020, during the celebration of Earth Day, and concluded on June 5, 2020, the same time as World Environment Day.
Often people who want to start to learn about nature are confused about where to begin. Even parents struggle to waive a course for their children. Don’t worry! Earth School will guide you through 6 weeks of adventures! Each week already waived to cover a theme with five different topics. The big picture is to learn about the nature of something.
You will go through a series of videos that explain the nature of our stuff in the first week. From the origin of our clothing, food that we ate, energy generation, and explore small changes in our behavior for natural recovery. In the second week, you will explore the nature of society shaped by the natural world. From the economy, inventions, and jobs that are often inspired by systems in nature.
In the third week, you will learn about the nature of nature. The systems of nature from water, air, life, climate, and habitat are covered. Next up, in the fourth week, you will discuss the nature of change. Earth’s fragile ecosystem in this time of change will be explained along with an optimist approach to rebalance our Earth.
The theme for the fifth week is the nature of individual action. You will learn the practical ways to build a healthy planet from recycling, composting, tree planting, urban gardening, and using renewable energy. From individual action, you will learn about the nature of collective action. Collaboration is the most powerful tool for protecting our planet. The last quest will enlighten us to be conscious, care, and invite others to join the fight to recover our Earth.
Earth School is still accessible, and upon the upcoming Earth Day 2021, on April 22, you are never too late to begin your quest!
If you enjoy reading this article, please tune-up for the next post! While waiting, consider checking out our free crash course to climate change and blue carbon ecosystem called Carbon Voice Curriculum, support us by visiting our website CabonEthics.org (we have cute and powerful babies for you to adopt!). Lastly, I would like to invite all of you, readers, to reduce what you can, offset what you cannot with CarbonEthics.
Oceanographic. (n.d.). Conservationists warn that coronavirus pandemic could spark surge in ocean pollution. Accessed on 19/4/2021 from https://www.oceanographicmagazine.com/news/ocean-covid-waste/
Proulx, N. (2020, April 7). Lesson of the Day: ‘When Humans Are Sheltered in Place, Wild Animals Will Play’. The New York Times. Accessed on 19/4/2021 from https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/07/learning/lesson-of-the-day-when-humans-are-sheltered-in-place-wild-animals-will-play.html
TED-ED. (n.d.). Earth School. Accessed on 18/4/2021 from https://ed.ted.com/earth-school
TED-ED. (2021, April 21), Earth School launched to keep students connected to nature. TED-ED Blog. Accessed on 18/4/2021 from https://blog.ed.ted.com/2020/04/21/earth-school-launched-to-keep-students-connected-to-nature/
United Nations. 2020. Policy Brief: Education during COVID-19 and beyond. Accessed on 18/4/2021 from https://www.un.org/development/desa/dspd/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2020/08/sg_policy_brief_covid-19_and_education_august_2020.pdf