Learning for Sustainability – Call to Action spotlight

Learning for Sustainability

Etive House, St Modan’s High School

Our learners are responding to the Call to Action by connecting, acting and sharing Target2030 through our creative curriculum.  Learning for Sustainability is the golden thread linking our curriculum, and by working in partnership with organisations such as Artlink Central, Avon Outdoors, Princes’ Trust and RHET, our learners have been supported to use their knowledge of reusing everyday items in a creative way.

The school wide Christmas door competition has enabled Etive House learners to continue their Learning for Sustainability journey from the design stage to realisation.  Having watched the John Lewis Christmas advert, it sparked discussion, which concluded in a visit to a local garden centre to look for a Venus Flytrap.  Within this project it is visible to see commitment to Sustainable Development Goal 12; Responsible Consumption and Production, using unwanted clothes, cushions and necklaces to make our ‘Snapper’ grow.

Our learners are now redesigning the door, applying principles of the circular economy to reuse the different parts of door project in the creation of a standalone Snapper, which will continue to inspire learners about nature, biodiversity, and responsible consumption.  Etive House learners are demonstrating their commitment to Target20230 by sharing their door design within the school community, and local authority.

Alison Poole

Integrated Support Worker


Get involved in COP28

COP 28 the United Nations Climate Change Conference is taking place in Dubai, United Emirates from 30 November until 12 December 2023

UN Climate Change conferences (or COPs) take place every year and are the world’s only multilateral decision-making forum on climate change with almost complete membership of every country in the world.

The COP is where the world comes together to agree on ways to address the climate crisis, such as limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius, helping vulnerable communities adapt to the effects of climate change and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.

More than 70,000 delegates are expected to attend COP28, including the member states of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Business leaders, young people, climate scientists, Indigenous Peoples, journalists, and various other experts and stakeholders are also among the participants.

Officially, COP 28 stands for the 28th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UNFCCC.

With the most important details of the Paris Climate Change Agreement negotiated and agreed over the last few years, COP 28 is all about implementing the Agreement and ramping up ambition and action.

This is a decisive decade for climate action.

The latest science from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change indicates that greenhouse gas emissions need to be cut 43% by 2030, compared to 2019 levels. This is critical to limit temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of this century and avoid the worst impacts of climate change, including more frequent and severe droughts, heatwaves and rainfall.

COP 28 is an opportunity to identify global solutions for limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees, develop countries’ preparations for revised and more ambitious national climate plans due by 2025, accelerate the green transition that is already happening and ultimately achieve the delivery of the Paris Agreement goals.


COP 28 Education Day

As part of the conference 8th December is dedicated to Youth, Children, Education and Skills. This Education day will seek to empower young people to shape the outcomes of COP28 and beyond, considering the impacts of climate change for young people. Focuses will include investment in youth-led innovation and entrepreneurship, inclusion in policy-making processes capacity–building, and transforming education to close the skills gap for green jobs aligned with climate action – Youth Children Skills – COP28 UAE.

UN Climate Change Conference (COP28) – Teaching Resources
COP28, the key questions and what it means for Scotland
First Minister and global leaders at COP28
Yousaf warns ‘planet at tipping point’ as he attends COP28 in UAE
Climate change education at COP28
Scottish students debate on climate crisis at COP28 mock event
Education Scotland’s COP26 legacy materials – recycling, reusing, repurpose materials from COP 26 in Glasgow…because they were so popular and it’s good for the planet to use again!
COP28 2023 Event Information and Teaching Resources (twinkl.co.uk)
Ways To Use COP28 In The Classroom – Teaching Ideas
ECO2 COP28 Resources (Ages 9 – 11)
Climate Ambassadors

STEM Learning has created a new subset of STEM Ambassadors called Climate Ambassadors. Employers and organisations can choose to be connected to Climate Ambassadors and filter requests of this type.


Join Free Online Course ‘Live at COP28’

How should we take positive action towards a sustainable future? The University of Edinburgh, Learning for Sustainability Scotland, and the British Council, have created a free, short, facilitated online course ideal for anyone interested in sustainability and of particular interest to educators.

  • Learning for a Sustainable Future: Live at COP28 (starting 30 November)
    Explore global issues during COP28 and be part of the call for collective action. Find out more about the key international frameworks that support action on climate change, and explore national and international responses to the conference themes from children and young people, community groups, and ministerial bodies. Engage in community discussion and share your perspectives and ideas for the future. Sign up here.

Scotland’s Climate Week 25 September – 1 October 2023

Scotland’s Climate Week 

Scotland’s Climate Week, an annual event that encourages individuals and communities to come together to show support for tackling the climate emergency, begins on 25 September and ends on 1 October.

This year is about taking action in the areas that have the most impact.

For example, emissions from car use and home heating are the biggest contributors to climate change in Scotland from individuals. By choosing more climate-friendly ways to travel and by improving our home heating, we can do good for the planet and it feels good for us too.


The climate crisis is already significantly impacting countries around the world, including Scotland. Together we can work to reduce our emissions to net zero and limit any further damage. By starting just one conversation with your students or colleagues you can create a ripple effect of positive actions that could help make the change needed to reach net zero and save the planet.

Climate change can be a hard thing to talk about, so the Climate Conversation pack outlines the important information you need to get started. It provides the opportunity to get to grips with all things climate change and identify topics and conversation starters to weave into your daily conversations, whether that’s on social media, at work, school or with friends.

Starting these conversations can help empower others and provide a sense of unity and community, but remember, it can be a challenging and emotional subject to bring up. No one should feel blamed, attacked, criticised or judged when talking about climate change. Always be mindful of where people are coming from – economically, societally, and emotionally.

For more details and information on how to take part in Scotland’s Climate Week click here.

Keep Scotland Beautiful Climate Action Week

26 September – 2 October

Timed with the Scottish Government’s Climate Week, Keep Scotland Beautiful Climate Action Week is a series of interactive lessons, inspiring stories and activities about climate change and what we can do about it. Click here to find out more.

There is an all ages assembly plan, secondary resources and interactive lessons aimed at helping upper primary learners understand what climate change is, its impacts, how we are contributing to this situation and how we can contribute to its solution. These lessons are supported with resources and activities that classes can carry out after each lesson.

Creative Collaborations for Sustainability conference 20 & 22 June

We are delighted to bring you the news of a forthcoming event run by Creative Scotland and Education Scotland. The Creative Collaborations for Sustainability conference aims to explore the opportunities for developing Learning for Sustainability in, about and through the arts, investigating through a variety of discipline-specific and interdisciplinary workshops how people and communities value and engage with the natural environment. Creative Collaborations for Sustainability seeks to support teachers in developing confidence to use arts approaches in their practice around Learning for Sustainability.

  • Tuesday 20th June will be for secondary practitioners
  • Wednesday 21st June will be for primary practitioners

See the dedicated website for more details: Creative Collaborations for Sustainability – Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (rcs.ac.uk)

Sign up through the Eventbrite page: Creative Collaborations for Sustainability Tickets

Learning for Sustainability update November 2022

Children issue call to action on Learning for Sustainability and outdoor learning

This latest report from the Children’s Parliament contains a clear call to all educators in all subject areas – our children want to receive their entitlement to Learning for Sustainability including learning about climate change, more frequent opportunities for outdoor learning and contact with nature. These findings echo the findings of other consultations such as the response to Prof Ken Muir’s Report: Putting Learners at the Centre. Hear what our children have to say.

Public consultation for the Independent Review of Qualifications and Assessment/Hayward Review is now live!

Links to the public consultation can be found below:

Professor Hayward’s Independent Review of Qualifications and Assessment – gov.scot (www.gov.scot)

Professor Hayward’s Independent Review of Qualifications and Assessment – public consultation – Scottish Government – Citizen Space

The secretariat are happy to answer any questions that you might have – qualificationsreform@gov.scot.

Join the National Discussion on the Curriculum

The National Discussion was launched at SLF – please get involved and encourage others to respond, especially young people.

Resources are available on the national website: https://consult.gov.scot/national-discussion-scottish-education/

Complete the survey at: https://consult.gov.scot/learning-directorate/national-discussion-on-education/

The conversation is being supported by  Scottish Government in partnership with COSLA.

There are a number of live discussion events taking place online on 16 and 23 November, supported by Professors Alma Harris and Carole Campbell.

It is a tight timescale for responding – the National Discussion ends 5/6 December.

Take part in the LfS Scotland event on 7 Nov on the response to the Hayward Review Consultation.

Join the National LfS Practitioner Network

Practitioners with an interest or responsibility for Learning for Sustainability are invited to join the national Learning for Sustainability Network in Teams in Glow. Joining code: O4sj08j. 

The network provides an opportunity to connect with like-minded practitioners, hear about latest opportunities and to share approaches, practice, resources and ideas.

SCQF project on Learning for Sustainability qualifications is now officially live and open for submissions.

Through the national LfS Action Plan and with support from Scottish Government, SCQF is seeking to increase the number and range of SCQF credit-rated courses associated with LfS.  Organisations across Scotland are being encouraged to submit proposals for new courses that can be SCQF credit-rated.

Details can be found here:

Learning for Sustainability Funded Project 2022/23 | Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (scqf.org.uk)

The closing date for applications is 11 November. If you need any additional information, please get in touch with Nicola Smith: N.smith@scqf.org.uk

Learning for a Sustainable Future

5-week MOOC (Massive Open Online Course)

Join a personal and professional global learning journey towards a sustainable future. This course supports you to reflect, investigate, discuss and develop an informed response to the global challenges that matter to you.

Find out more and sign up here

‘Learning for Sustainability and the Professional Standards’

Learning for Sustainability Scotland are hosting a monthly Drop-In with GTC Scotland

Last Thursday of every month.

Join the Learning for Sustainability conversation. Our monthly Drop-Ins Connect you with other teachers and contributors to collaborate on, inspire, inform and celebrate Learning for Sustainability across your teaching, setting and learning community.

Find out more and sign up here

‘Learning for Sustainability and “Putting Young People at the Centre”’: a round-table discussion for the youth work sector

5 October, 16:00 – 17:00

The Scottish Government and COSLA are launching the ‘most inclusive ever discussion on education in Scotland, with learners playing a key part in decision-making’. In addition, a refresh of the national Learning for Sustainability Action Plan is currently underway. How do we ensure that youth work sector organisations can collaborate to support these important new developments?

Find out more and sign up here

Plastic Pollution Live Lesson, 7-11 November

The Plastic Pollution Live Lessons from Keep Scotland Beautiful offer tailored content for Early Years-P3, P4-P7 and secondary schools.

School Partnerships & Global Learning: CCGL Practitioner Research, 10 November, 16:30

The Development Education Research Centre (DERC) is hosting a second research webinar to introduce and celebrate further research studies produced through the Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning (CCGL) Practitioner Research Fund.

John Muir Award, Wild Places and Education Priorities, 16 November, 16:00

Join the John Muir Trust online to explore how wild places and the John Muir Award can benefit learning and educational priorities in Scotland.

Rights Across the Curriculum: Teaching About, Through and For Rights, 17 November, 16:30

This interactive, two-part course from Scotland’s Development Education Centres will help you to develop a rights-based approach across your teaching, learning and wider school life.

Develop Arts-based Outdoor Learning in your School with Out to Play

Eco Drama’s 2023 Out to Play Residencies Programme is now available to book for primary schools in Glasgow and surrounding areas.

Positive Imaginings: Creative Climate Education

Positive Imaginings from Rowanbank Environmental Arts and Education is a Creative Climate Education Project, which explores children’s imaginings of a positive future in the face of climate change. Expressions of interest are invited from primary schools for their Spring, Summer and Autumn terms 2023.

Introduction to Teaching Sustainability and Climate Action in Schools

Discover the role that learning for sustainability and climate action has to play in tackling the climate crisis. On this four-week course from the University of Glasgow, you’ll delve into the role of education in addressing the current climate crisis.

Dirt Is Good Schools Programme

The Dirt Is Good Schools Programme from Persil and its partners enables young people to take action on the environmental and social causes they care about; planning and delivering a social or environmental project that works towards one of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Watch Again: Scottish Learning Festival 2022

The SLF 2022 ‘watch again’ facility is now live with more than 65 seminars, spotlights and satellite events from the two-day conference available to view online; including a range of seminars on Learning for Sustainability and Outdoor learning.

Scottish Junior Forester Award

Outdoor and Woodland Learning (OWL) Scotland are pleased to announce a range of courses this winter on the recently launched Scottish Junior Forester Award. Venues include Abriachan Forest Trust – Inverness, Kinnoul Hill – Perth, Pollok Park – Glasgow and Newbattle Abbey in Dalkeith. The Newbattle and Abriachan courses will cover tree planting and the Glasgow and Perth course will cover tool use.


Get set for COP27 – get involved

COP27 DYW Live Programme

Get set for COP27 – learn about climate change and help develop skills in Scotland’s future workforce.  Learning about climate change and sustainability is a pathway to the future; relevant for all future jobs. As part of COP27 Week 2022 DYW Live, Education Scotland and e-Sgoil are excited to offer a range of activities around climate change and its impact on future jobs and future skills.

Collaborating with six industry partners sharing what they are doing to prevent climate change, join us for an industry-led inspiration talk followed by a climate lesson on Teams which can be used to enhance learning from the webinar or as a standalone activity.

14 November

  • AM – Construction – hear from Built Environment, Smarter Transformation (BE-ST) as they seek to accelerate the built environment’s transition to zero carbon emissions.
  • PM – Ethical Finance – Shared Interest is an ethical investment organisation which aims to alleviate poverty by helping people in remote and disadvantaged communities, to trade and earn a living.

15 November

  • AM – Energy transition – Hear from Catapult Offshore Renewable Energy and their plans to harness nature’s energy in sustainable ways.
  • PM – Sustainable fashion – ACS’ mission is to be the leading enabler of the fashion industry’s circular economy in the UK and Europe.

17 November 

  • AM – Agriculture and ForestryLANTRA will explain how working the fields, forests and hills can mitigate against climate change.
  • PM – TransportHear how FirstBus is reducing the impact of travel on the planet and creating green jobs in the process.

To find out more and register visit the DYW LIVE COP27 page

The webinars will be recorded and made available afterwards on the e-sgoil webpage.


Live at COP27 Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)

2-week MOOC (Massive Open Online Course).

Starts 7 November

This online course, run by Learning for Sustainability Scotland, will explore global issues during COP27. Be part of the call for collective action.

Find out more and sign up here. Why not engage with our legacy resource – ‘Live at COP26’ – too?


Climate Ambassadors

STEM Learning has created a new subset of STEM Ambassadors called Climate Ambassadors. Employers and organisations can choose to be connected to Climate Ambassadors and filter requests of this type.


Royal Society of Chemistry Take Charge Battery Experiment

To tackle the growing climate crisis, we need to move away from fossil fuels and embrace electrification. A crucial part of this journey is bigger and better batteries; we need them to be a sustainable storage solution to ease our energy transition.

Taking part in the global battery experiment will give you the opportunity to explore the science behind batteries – and why they are such an important part of our bright energy future.

Countdown to COP

Education Scotland’s COP26 legacy materials – recycling, reusing, repurpose materials from last year…because they were so popular and it’s good for the planet to use again!


Scottish Learning Festival – LfS Pathway

The Scottish Learning Festival is free to attend and everyone with an interest in education is welcome to register.  This year the programme has around 65 seminars including spotlight sessions offering a fantastic line up of speakers, debates and opportunities for professional learning and networking.

Our programme will once again be held in an amazing 3D virtual venue and you will be able to view the sessions anywhere from any device that has internet access.
You will need to register to access the virtual venue, but you don’t need to pre-register for sessions, all you need to do is explore the programme, decide what you’d like to attend and just join any session of your choice on the day.

Below is a Learning for Sustainability pathway curated for you over the two days of SLF 2022:

Wednesday 21 September 12:30 – 13:15

Learning for Sustainability (LfS), the Professional Standards and you: supporting the learner entitlement to LfS

Explore the new GTC Scotland Learning for Sustainability Hub, and hear from practitioners about how to realise this most vital of themes in your practice and the wider life of your setting. Betsy King

Wednesday 21 September 14:00 – 14:45

Designing Our Outdoor World

Join Nils Aksnes and Keira Anderson (Make + Do Design Studio) and Madeleine Conn (Cultural Coordinator, Argyll and Bute Council) to explore how creative approaches to outdoor spaces impacted on learners’ mental health and wellbeing in the Designing Our Outdoor World primary project.

Taking the climate and biodiversity crises seriously: learners and practitioners taking action and making a difference

Hear directly from Allan’s Nursery, Dunblane Primary and St Modan’s Secondary Additional Support Needs provision on how they are working together to realise learners’ entitlement for Learning for Sustainability and help combat climate change.
Participants will be inspired and encouraged to take action in their setting.
Danny Smith, Jennifer Hutton, Iona McCroary &  Vicky Cunningham plus learners and climate ambassadors

Wednesday 21 September 15:45 – 16:30

Outdoor Education, Equity, Evaluation & Impact for Learners – providing an outdoor experience that is available to all Scottish Young People
Explore a definition of wellbeing through Outdoor Education, around feeling good and functioning well and helping young people to flourish. With discussion of research and impact on learners. Martin Davidson

Thursday 22 September 10:00 – 10:45

Developing Successful Approaches to Outdoor Learning

This session will hear from two groups of settings and the collaboration that took place on their journey to develop outdoor learning. Settings have developed outdoor learning champions and shared their process of change including skills audits, confidence and spaces and practice leading to action plans, reflection and impact.
Rowena Nursery, Glasgow City Council and Flowerbank Early Childhood Centre, Craighead Country Nursery, East Ayrshire



RHET CLPL Opportunity

10th September Teacher Training

The Royal Highland Education Trust (RHET) are offering all primary and early level practitioners a free face to face CLPL opportunity on 10th September from 10 – 12 at the Pavilion Ingliston, Edinburgh.

The CLPL session will provide participants with the opportunity to:

  • Develop an understanding and appreciation of STEM in food and farming
  • Upskill around The Journey of Food, covering farm to fork, sustainability and influences on consumer choices

Including  a number of curricular linked activities; participants will be provided with the resources required to deliver them in the classroom.

Book your place here

Thousands of learners benefit from outdoor learning

More than 6,000 young people in some of the most disadvantaged areas of Scotland have benefited from a project to encourage learning outdoors.

The Learning in Local Greenspace project has supported 115 schools across 12 local authorities to use nearby green spaces, such as parks and woodlands, for outdoor learning.

Led by NatureScot, this collaborative project worked with more than 20 partner organisations with the aim of embedding outdoor learning in schools, with more than 500 teachers taking part.

Learning outdoors has been shown to improve the health and wellbeing of pupils, and can also have a positive impact on behaviour and engagement, in turn leading to better attainment.

An evaluation report found that, as a result of the project, the percentage of teachers taking learning outdoors in their local greenspace regularly rose from 28% to 49%, while teacher confidence in doing so increased from 54% to 85%.

Following the project more than a third (37%) felt that their pupils had a good connection to nature, compared to just 19% previously. The percentage of teachers who believed their pupils’ engagement in learning outdoors was good or excellent also increased from 56% to 79%.

The project also developed a range of free resources for outdoor learning that are available to all via the Learning in local greenspace project webpages.






Supporting learners during conflict and war

This webinar will provide opportunities for practitioners working in a range of sectors to discuss how they can support children and young people who may be anxious about what they see or hear in the news.

Target Audience – the target audience for this event is professionals within the Education, Creative and Cultural Sectors in Scotland. To register for the event please enter either a school/establishment/Glow/local authority, a company or personal email address.

Wednesday 23 March 2022
16:00 – 17:15

Register here.

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