December 11, 2020 – The Department of Education (DepEd), through the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service (DRRMS), and the Climate Change Commission (CCC), marked another milestone as they conducted the first free webinar for secondary teachers to advance climate education in the entire country.
A handful of renowned people in the field of climate action graced the “Climate Science Master Class for High School Teachers” to share about climate education via Zoom and Facebook Live last November 24, 2020, as part of the activities for the 4th National Climate Change Conference (NCCC) and the 13th Annual Global Warming and Climate Change Consciousness Week.
The Master Class featured lectures and discussion by the National Panel of Technical Experts, the government’s lead technical advisory body on climate science and technology, and oriented the high school teachers on the knowledge materials that DepEd-DRRMS and its partners are developing to help teachers effectively unpack learning competencies on climate change and promote climate action.
Mr. Jerome E. Ilagan, Chief of the Policy Research and Development Division of the CCC, affirmed that the idea of making climate education accessible to more students across the country is a priority.
With this in mind, they organized the said webinar to integrate climate education in many basic learning areas like Math, English, Filipino, Araling Panlipunan, and others.
One of the key speakers, DepEd-DRRMS Dir. Ronilda R. Co, informed the participants that they have plotted three ways to make climate education happen with the means of references such as creating a Microsite on Curated Resources for Teaching Climate Change as an online website, developing handbooks and self-learning modules, and producing the KALIKHASAN: Likha at Lakas ng Kabataan Para sa Kalikasan: a creative sourcebook on using theater for climate change education and action.
“[By means of this,] we want to generate the best from the youth, we want to hear their critiques,” she stated, remarking how the youth are engaging efforts to make a difference in these trying times.
Furthermore, the proposed handbooks consist of the following topics: The Science of Climate Change, Climate and Disaster Risk, Impacts of Climate Change on Human Beings, and Solutions to Climate Change.
The teacher-participants were also exposed to informative topics like the roles of greenhouse gases in global warming, ocean acidification, mitigation and adaptation, climate change on the health, responsibilities in climate change, biodiversity as well as other topics to consider.
Meanwhile, a total number of 1,100 participants joined the Zoom session while its Facebook streaming garnered 46,800 viewers.
The CCC Vice-Chairperson and Executive Director Emmanuel M. De Guzman expressed his high hopes for the project that is about to materialize.
“Together, let us pave the way for a new generation of Filipinos fully aware and knowledgeable of the various dimensions of the climate emergency and fully committed to usher[ing] a brighter, safer, and more secure future for the Filipino nation,” he remarked.
This Master Class is part of the activities of the Department’s celebration of the 4th NCCC which went full-digital this year. More information about the conference can be found on https://bit.ly/4thNCCC. (Read DepEd’s 4th National Climate Change Conference goes online)
This article was written and prepared by Erin Consebido (Student-Journalist) and Abigail Mirabel-Agapay (School Paper Adviser) from Liliw National High School, Division of Laguna who are graduates of DepEd-DRRMS and AYEJ.org’s Green Beat Initiative: An Online Environmental Journalism Training.