Sustainability education : the educational thoughts, practices, and influences of ecoforester Merve Wilkinson
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The focus of this research is the life story of Merve Wilkinson whose practice as ecoforester and educator sustains and promotes ecological knowledge and responsibility. Using the method of narrative inquiry I explore Wilkinson's meanings, self-understandings, influences, actions and values as he reflected on the development of his sustainability philosophy, his practice of sustainability education, and his vision of education for the future. This research documents his education philosophy that shows insight into the meanings, structures and essences of sustainability education. Four key areas of reform in education emerged: early childhood personal experience with nature to nurture the sense of wonder, caring for nature, and connection with the natural world; adults/teachers share with their students their knowledge, feelings, and actions that demonstrate responsible environmental behaviours; the wisdom of historical knowledge and practical skills is honoured; a long-range vision is developed that integrates environmental values with a tradition of democratic participation.
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