Looking to future perceptions about climate change in Brazil: What children’s teachers think, learn and teach about?

Abstract

The social and human sciences have had a minor role in the studies of climate change. There remains a significant gap in our knowledge and understanding of the many facets of this theme. The educational sector has been neglected in the climate change scientific debate, although it is acknowledged as a key sector. This article aims to understand how teachers are dealing with the climate change topic: what they think, learn and teach about it. It is focused on teachers at elementary schools (6–14 years old) in São José dos Campos, São Paulo State, Brazil. This type of social research is important for developing countries such as Brazil, where the sociological research on climate change is emergent. The identification of teachers' perceptions on climate change is an important step in finding ways to listen to and engage with them in the formulation of climate change adaptation plans, especially because they will be among the people responsible for preparing the younger generations of citizens. The survey of teachers’ knowledge and perception about climate change provides two main approaches: (1) It supports better planning of future school activities, training, and updating knowledge and (2) It suggests how children are being prepared to understand and deal with this contemporary problem of climate change.

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Acknowledgements

Victor Marchezini thanks the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP), Brazil (Grant No. 2018/06093-4).

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Correspondence to Luciana R. Londe.

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Marchezini, V., Londe, L.R. Looking to future perceptions about climate change in Brazil: What children’s teachers think, learn and teach about?. Nat Hazards 104, 2325–2337 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11069-020-04274-4

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Keywords

  • Climate change
  • Global environmental changes
  • Education
  • Social dimension
  • Environmental perception
  • Youth