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The Little Green Steps program develops and supports Education for Sustainability (EfS) in early learning centres. Early learning centres include childcare centres, preschools, kindergartens, after-school care and long daycare services for children aged 0-8 years.
Little Green Steps has been running successfully in NSW’s Gosford City and Wyong Shire Councils since 2004. In May 2010 the Australian Association for Environmental Education WA Chapter (AAEEWA) gained assistance to run two one-day workshops in Perth for early years educators, titled ‘Promoting Environmental Sustainability in Children’s Services’. The success and interest generated by the workshops encouraged the AAEEWA to seek funding and support to run a pilot of Little Green Steps in Western Australia.
In 2012, the AAEEWA secured funding through a Lotterywest grant and the pilot program has been underway since July. Little Green Steps is directly supporting sustainability learning and practice in three not-for-profit childcare centres, one each in the City of Canning, Gosnells and Armadale. All early learning educators are invited to use the resources that are developed by Little Green Steps to support Education for Sustainability in their own early learning environments.
minimise waste and reduce energy use
save water choose environmentally friendly cleaning practices
grow plants & vegetables recycle food scraps in a compost bin or worm farm
maintain natural play spaces
explore Australian plants & animals
explore Aboriginal culture
develop environmental policies
learn about environmental issues & contribute to their solutions
access resources and
maintain links with relevant networks
Takes a whole-of-centre approach, making sustainable learning and behaviours part of day to day activities
Provides professional development workshops for staff at the centres
Facilitates planning sessions with centre staff to identify and implement sustainability actions for their centres
Supports the Early Years Learning Framework and National Quality Standards
Maintains a network of local and national contacts within the Early Childhood and Education for Sustainability sectors
Is supported by local councils and incorporates community initiatives
Engages children at the centres in learning sustainable behaviours through observing and interacting with staff and the centre environment
Provides staff with environmental activities and resources to use with children in structured and spontaneous activities and play
Involves parents and families in the children’s learning about sustainability
Assists centres to develop natural outdoor spaces for children to learn and play in
Evaluates progress and outcomes throughout the program
If you have any questions or would like to find out more about the approach to sustainability at our centre, please call our office on 07 5527 1679.