We believe that schools play a pivotal role in moving us beyond our growing environmental crises and toward a sustainable society. We recognize schooling for sustainability as a process that fosters abundant living on a finite planet and makes teaching and learning come alive.
We bring a passion to our work that stems from our conviction that the best hope for learning to live sustainably lies in schooling that returns to the real basics: engaging with the natural world; understanding how nature sustains life; nurturing healthy communities; exploring the consequences of how we feed and provision ourselves; caring about the places where we live and the people and creatures in them.
We are inspired by the growing movement of educators, parents, and community members who embrace this vision.
The Center for Ecoliteracy is a leader in the green schooling movement.
Smart by Nature™, the Center’s framework and services for schooling for sustainability, is based on two decades of work with schools and organizations in more than 400 communities across the United States and numerous other countries.
The Center is best known for its pioneering work with school gardens, school lunches, and integrating ecological principles and sustainability into school curricula.
The Center for Ecoliteracy offers books; teaching guides; professional development seminars; a sustainability leadership academy; keynote presentations; and consulting services. Among its books for educators, parents, and other people interested in sustainability are:
– Smart by Nature: Schooling for Sustainability (foreword by Daniel Goleman);
– Ecological Literacy: Educating Our Children for a Sustainable World (foreword by David W. Orr);
– Big Ideas: Linking Food, Culture, Health, and the Environment (foreword by Michael Pollan).
The Center’s work has been praised by numerous organizations, including the National Science Teachers Association, National Wildlife Federation, North American Association for Environmental Education, and Participant Media, producers of the Academy Award nominee Food, Inc. Others who have endorsed its work include Daniel Goleman, Richard Heinberg, David W. Orr, Michael Pollan, Frances Moore Lappé, Joanna Macy, and Alice Waters.
The Center for Ecoliteracy was cofounded by Fritjof Capra, physicist and systems thinker; Peter Buckley, former CEO of Esprit International and environmental philanthropist; and Zenobia Barlow, now its executive director. It is located in the award-winning David Brower Center, a home for environmental and social action in Berkeley, California.
The Center’s website offers hundreds of downloadable resource materials, including practical guides, essays by leading writers and experts, and inspiring stories of school communities and organizations across the country that are engaged in this vital work.
MORE INFO: ecoliteracy.org