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United Nations University ,Tokyo, Japan acknowledged the operation of a Regional Centre of Expertise (RCE-Tirupati) on ‘Education for Sustainable Development’ under the Chairmanship of Prof.R.Ramamurthi. The Foundation is being launched at Orion Hall of Hotel Pai Viceroy on Oct 1st 2015 at 7.30 pm.

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Transformative Education

Transformative Education Agenda

One of the components of Vision of RCE-Tirupati is to develop Transformative Learning Modules to create long lasting impression of the bio-cultural values and importance of Conservation of Water, Bioresources, Preparedness for coastal hazards and Livelihoods on local communities and on school students who are partners in bringing about change in bio-social values. The methods and modules will naturally vary with the target groups for the non formal transformative education.

Modules for Students:
Students need to be provided with the right kind of ambience for experiential Learning. Concepts such as Role of Biodiversity in Human Welfare we need to use different methods. After a preliminary exposure of the students to charts, pictures and other visuals explaining the Assessment of Ecosystem Health say Forests we initiate group discussion based on the exposure. Take for example Elephant in Koundinya forest or rhinoceros in Khaziranga forest are considered as Flagship species. To understand the forest system health we need not have to study the whole ecosystem. If the flagship species is healthy the ecosystem is healthy. By discussion and deliberation the students will arrive at the right conclusion. Similar examples are the keystone species and Indicator species.Redsanders tree (Pterocarpus santalinus) endemic to Seshachalam forest is the keystone species and earthworms are indicators of soil health. Students once learn this by experiential learning will realize the value of transformative education.
Similar methods can be employed to teach students the importance of Ecosystem services of Nature such as pollination caused by insects, seed dispersal caused by bats and birds.
For physical involvement and hands on experience schools and colleges and parks can be helped to create small Biodiversity Park with endemic species and also a Medicinal plant garden.
To impart knowledge of importance of water and its value to society visuals of waterfalls, lakes, rivers, streams and wetlands are shown first and group discussion is initiated for water use and conservation, watershed and rain water harvesting. Models can be created for watershed and water harvesting through trenches along land slopes. Success stories have to be narrated and shown through visuals.In cities many models are available for rain water harvesting.

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