Heike Freire and 'Green Pedagogy': How to make children reconnect with nature

There was a little book, entitled 50 things that children can do to save the earth, which circulated some time ago by schools. Heike Freire, author to educate

Heike Freire and 'Green Pedagogy': How to make children reconnect with nature

There was a little book, entitled 50 things that children can do to save the earth, which circulated some time ago by schools. Heike Freire, author to educate green, came to use her with her students. Until a girl of five or six years expressed the "feeling complaint" of her before the approach of the work: "But how are we going to save the earth with how bad you are leaving it?!"

That infantile lament covered in the heart of the pedagogue, who did not take long to reach a conclusion: "The problem of environmental education, as has been practiced so far, is that it is based on guilt and fear: two Unpleasant emotions from which we have a tendency to flee. The underlying story in a large part of the environmental speeches is that human beings are bad for the planet. With a story so, it can not be done much more than rewarding or punishing. Do not you think? ".

Facing the "Blanca" pedagogy (the rewards) and the "black" pedagogy (the punishments), Heike Freire vindicates the "green" pedagogy, which proposes an accompaniment of the "natural processes" of development and learning in children, starting for the reconnection with themselves and with their surroundings. So we are going from tremendous messages to climate change as "save" the planet, which so much "ecoansiness" generates in children and not so children. And we are going to replace it for something as simple as "love the Earth".

"The human being takes seven million years on this planet and throughout that time has contributed other living beings to the creation and vitality of the biosphere. Our ability to destruct is much more recent. It represents a moment of the story of Humanity in which we have completely lost our innate sense of connection with Earth. When recovering that meaning, we also recover love for nature. And it is impossible to harm someone you truly love. "

Freire vindicates the concept of "biofilia" (love to life) coined in his day by Erick FromM and updated by Edward O. Wilson and Stephen Keller: "There is a spontaneous affection that can be seen soon in any baby with a moderately healthy growth: He loves the earth, he likes water, plants, trees, tiny animals and greats ... for that reason, when he is among them, he expresses curiosity, joy and enthusiasm. "

Nature as a mother and teacher. That is the proposal of Heike Freire, witness and part of the "enormous advance" of environmental awareness in schools since he published "Educate in Verde" a decade ago: "Very few people then valued the need for contact with the natural world. Seeing a creature playing with Earth or looking for bugs, uploaded to a tree or planting a seed, it did not seem important for your future. "

"Today, however, there are more and more people who know how vital about that contact, their enormous present and future transcendence," says the "green" pedagogue, editor of a recent book - "Live courtyards" - with dozens of initiatives Throughout our geography to discharge the places of recreation and "renaturalize" from within schools.

"There are also more and more teachers who dare to impart their outdoor classes, in the courtyard or in the surroundings of the centers. Schools that literally occupy public gardens and deliver the joy of children as an offering for the Health and well-being of its neighbors. And families that are organized to create outdoor spaces in their neighborhoods, who prefer to see their children spotted and happy at the end of the day, instead of clean and trimmed. "

More than a new "subject", Heike sees the midsole as a thread that connects and empowes all knowledge, and there it also fits climate change ("which is a too abstract concept so that 14-year-old boys can understand it fully ") or the loss of biodiversity," something more concrete and close, that can beaten and investigate, and that can reach them to the heart. "

"The environment has to be the nexus of all subjects, where each one can build their own trajectory," he warns. "We have no idea what the labor market will require in ten years, but we know that we will need good people ... and surely farmers to cultivate proximity products. And biologists to repair ecosystems. And engineers that can design technologies inspired by Nature. And artists and communicators capable of creating a new narrative focused on life and rooted on Earth. "

On the fly, Heike Freire has been realizing that the "nature deficit" - the concept coined by Richard Louv in "the latest children in the forest" - is also a pressing problem among adults: "It's too late to focus on Exclusively in childhood, we need to make an ecological approach in the heart of society and culture. It is vital that each person recovers contact with nature. "

What happened during the pandemic, with that mass invasion of the green spaces after the confinement, is to his understanding a palpable sample of the extent we need that reconnection ... "what happens is that we continue to object the nature. "Squeeze it" to provide us with a well-being that we have lost, we apply with those places and create problems with things as basic as noises or cleaning. "

In that line, the last performance sponsored by Heike Freire is included in its superior Green Pedagogy Course: the first park of silence in Spain. With the support of a dozen educators who joined the project, the "title" has relapsed about the park of Montergre and Corridor in Barcelona. It is the maximum distinction that Quiet Parks International grants, an acoustic ecology organization that rewards places where an immersion is possible in "natural silence".

"It's the first recognition of this guy who receives a Peninsula park and we hope he will inspire other parks," warns Heike Freire. "To celebrate, we organize the day" beat of Montnegre ", which will take place on October 9."

He emphasizes the pedagogue the need to involve all ages in the pressing task of "reconnecting with nature", and recalls the fundamental role of adults as a reference or "model" for boys and girls. After all, education is a reflection of society and culture: "It is the shellfish that bites the tail".

"The ecoansiness of which so much talk is scared, fear of life, in the background is biofobia," HEIKE Holds. "Favor the daily contact with nature, and from the positive emotion of love, care and affection towards the planet, it is completely necessary for children to develop transformation projects, which are empowering and can do posititive things."

We finally asked the author to educate green by the "Greta Effect", and assures that it has been "very positive, especially for young people of high school and baccalaureate" so it has "close model of commitment to the planet". To the understanding of her, the love of nature is compatible with the "courage" of being able to point the adults with his finger and tell them: "We are stealing our childhood, our future."

"It is important that many Gretas grow, which can show the hypocrisy and immaturity of ecological-educational discourses developed many times by people totally disconnected from nature," warns the pedagogue. "Speeches with which it is intended to" do something "when, perhaps by selfishness or cowardice, we are displacing the next generation urgent problems, which require solution in the present. Because there is no selfishness when you really love, nor cowardice when you defend Those of appreciations. We need hundreds, thousands of Gretas to become aware of our disconnection and start up to recover it. "

Updated Date: 09 October 2021, 01:46

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