ECOSF and Partners hosted a 5 Day Capacity Building Workshop on Climate Change Education in Islamabad
Pakistan is one of the most vulnerable countries to the impacts of climate change in the world. The country is expected to face severe extreme climate events. Hence there is an urgent need for the adaptive capacity of communities through adequate science education and enabling citizens to make informed decisions in the context of climate change.
Recognizing this need, the ECO Science Foundation (ECOSF) in collaboration with Sukkur IBA University (SIBAU), UNESCO and the Pakistan National Commission for UNESCO (PNCU) organized 5 days Capacity Building Workshop for Science Teachers on Climate Change Education in Islamabad from March 28- April 1, 2022. It is important to mention that ECOSF won the grant under participation programme of the UNESCO for hosting this workshop in Pakistan.
The prime purpose of this training was to produce a cadre of science teachers who can effectively deliver training programmes on climate change education for their peers using Inquiry Based Science Education (IBSE) pedagogy. Over 30 science teachers from across Pakistan participated in the workshop. The training workshop underscored that science education plays a vital role to prepare societies for the future global challenges, including the climate change.
During the inaugural ceremony of the workshop, renowned scientist Prof. Pierre Léna delivered his keynote speech. Prof. Lena is the Co-Founder La main à la pâte (LAMAP) Foundation, & Renowned French Astrophysicist, based in Paris, France. Prof. Lena presented the global scientific overview of the climate change and suggested the interventions to integrate climate change education into the classroom.
Academician Dato’ Ir. (Dr.) Lee Yee Cheong, Honorary Chairman of the Governing Board of International Science Technology and Innovation Centre for South-South Cooperation under the auspices of UNESCO (ISTIC) Malaysia, President of Belt and Road International Science Education Consortium (BRISEC), Member of the UN Broad Band Commission and Former Chairman Global Council of InterAcademy Partnership (IAP) Science Education Programme, who is also a member of ECOSF’s International Advisory Board, participated as the Chief Guest through a video link.
President ECOSF, Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro welcomed the participants and underlined the role of ECOSF in promoting science education and ongoing capacity building programme for science teachers in the ECO region. Representatives of partner organizations including, Secretary General PNCU Syed Junaid Akhlaq and Mr. Mujeeb ur Rehman from Sukkur IBA University also spoke during the ceremony. Mr. Khalil Raza Science Officer of ECOSF was the master of inaugural ceremony and as the coordinator of the project, presented an overview and objectives of the workshop.
Lead Trainers from Institute of Teacher Education, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia; Prof. Abdul Muhaimin Osman and Prof. Rajab Aziz conducted the training workshop with their core expertise in Science Education using Inquiry Based pedagogy. Prof. Osman is the Director of Institute of Teacher Education, Perlis Malaysia, while Prof. Aziz had been associated with this institute as former faculty and science educator. Dr. Simon Clien from the Office of Climate Change Education (OCE)- a UNESCO Category-2 Centre in Paris- France also virtually shared the OCE parogramme of Climate Change Education and the online resources with the workshop participants.
Prof. Osman and Prof. Aziz in the past have designed and conducted several training modules for science teachers to help them develop effective learning and teaching delivery skills and practices in many countries. Science teachers during the workshop were quite excited, engaged and inspired as the trainers during workshop employed interactive approach with many hands-on activities on climate science.
During the intense five days workshop, participants learned about the impacts of climate change in Pakistan and the major concepts related to climate change: change, biosphere, greenhouse phenomena, impacts, mitigation, adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR).
Workshop also equipped science teachers to understand better on learning methodologies and enhanced their skills, knowledge and competency around climate literacy and discussed how to best integrate climate change education in the classroom.
One of the major takeaways of the workshop was recognition of immediate need for integrating climate change education for mainstreaming and replicating this workshop at much larger scale for widespread adoptability of climate science content at Pakistani schools. In the concluding ceremony, certificates were distributed among the participants.