Our Approach

The program approach will build on the following principles and steps:

1. Structure: modular and progressive learning

To keep the children interested and engaged, the environmental education activities will build on existing knowledge and create a program that is intellectually stimulating and interactive.The program is designed to follow a modular and progressive learning approach. There are three thematic focus areas which can be incorporated to different degrees in each module. Theme 1 focuses on developing multiple values for nature and knowledge about nature; Theme 2 focuses on developing skills, such as critical thinking and analytical skills needed to solve conservation issues; and Theme 3 focuses on developing skills, space and opportunity for conservation action. Activities in each module will be developed with these focus areas in mind, and successive modules will be designed to build on learnings from previous modules.

Examples of modules with activities under each are provided under the environmental education modules section.

2. Context: science, indigenous knowledge & local culture

The educational materials will be contextualized to reflect the local ecology and culture by drawing on scientific and local indigenous knowledge and cultural values.

3. Gender: no girl left behind!

The education program will explicitly factor in gender-sensitive approaches to ensure that all children are reached and no girl is left behind.

4. Ethics, privacy, and child safety

Child safety and privacy will be of utmost importance while conducting the conservation education programmes. The rights and security of children and young people need to be protected, promoted and respected at each stage of the programme.

5. Partnerships

Partnerships are important for successfully implementing environmental education programs and must include local communities, schools, teachers, education departments, and others. Partnerships with local teachers and communities are important to build the momentum to propagate conservation education.

6. Delivery

The programme can be delivered in a variety of ways. We recommend that all delivery approaches use good practices teaching principles for connecting children with nature. Here we list a few recommended principles for environmental education (Wilson, 2011): 

  • Make the content relevant to the everyday lives of children. Focus the action orientated activities on targeting locally relevant issues. 
  • Encouraging participatory processes where activities are social (the chance to socialise and build friendships)  and fun
  • Exploratory and active learning/ Less classroom orientated learning
  • Promote activities that encourage direct experiences; i.e. use of senses to actively explore and experience
  • Encourage children to become active stakeholders in the environment and decision making
  • Encourage children to be optimistic about the future
  • Promote activities that increase the confidence of children
  • Encourage children to work towards making their own decisions
  • Promote collective learning and activities that promote collaborations 

Activities can either be spread out through the year, or conducted through intensive short modules. Some suggested modes of delivery are given below:

a.  Eco-camps: They are short, intensive ‘residential’ modules and with active learning organized in the outdoors by children hosting children for 3-5 day camps in accessible regions in snow leopard habitat.

b.  School eco-clubs: Eco-clubs are established through partnerships with schools and can be used to engage students through the year and over the school going years. Activities can be facilitated by teachers, community members or senior students and are conducted during or after school hours.

c.  Community eco-clubs: Eco-clubs can be established at the community level, in a village or district, to engage with children outside of schools. Activities can be planned throughout the year.

d.  Distance learning: Online learning platforms for distance learning are becoming increasingly popular, and can be used for conservation education. They have the potential to reach a large number of students, including students outside snow leopard landscapes, with relatively less effort than in-person education. This also provides the opportunity to increase the frequency of interactions and classes.

7. Monitoring of the program

Effective programme performance is integrally linked to well-designed monitoring and evaluation systems and course corrections. Monitoring and evaluation help identify how well a project or strategy is working, identify whether there is the desired conservation impact, and enable course correction. We encourage programs to develop a monitoring framework and identify key output and outcome indicators in order to track progress.