CAELI believes in the process of incremental infusion, which works to increase the capacity of school districts and teachers to incorporate environmental literacy into the core academic experience of California’s K–12 students. By building environment-based learning into existing core subject areas, we are helping school districts achieve learning goals within and across subjects. We focus on integrating environmental literacy into existing classroom instruction, professional learning programs, and student assessments.
California’s Environmental Principles & Concepts (EP&Cs) have been integrated into the new History–Social Science, Science, and Health Frameworks. The EP&Cs are also included in the required criteria for instructional materials. In 2017, publishers included the EP&Cs in new history–social science instructional materials, and as of November 2018, the State Board of Education approved 29 K–8 science programs that include EP&Cs.
CAELI partners with the California Subject Matter Project, a statewide network for teacher professional learning that provides teachers with intensive professional-learning workshops, curriculum resources, and webinars weaving environmental content into multiple subject areas. The California Science Project, the California Global Education Project, and the California History–Social Science Project provide teachers with intensive summer institutes, empowering them to teach their students using an environmental lens.
CAELI partners with the California Science Teachers Association to support their annual Climate Summit, development of short courses related to climate literacy, and grade-level units of study focused on climate and the Next Generation Science Standards.
CAELI partners present workshops on the EP&Cs and environmental literacy at Science, History–Social Science, and Health Frameworks rollouts throughout California, supporting teachers and administrators to implement environment-based learning for students and achieve district academic goals. CAELI is also working collaboratively to begin integrating formal measurements of environmental literacy into the education system. California’s Science Test Blueprint now includes the EP&Cs, and they are being integrated into student assessments in grades five and eight, and at the high school level.