Education for Sustainability Resources


Policies and Initiatives

Schools Taking Action
What actions can you take now? Start with the Footprint Calculator to discover how many planets are required to support your lifestyle. By taking the quiz and finding out your Ecological Footprint, you can discover your biggest areas of resource consumption and learn what you can do to tread more lightly on the Earth.

Once you’ve taken the quiz, be inspired by what schools around the country are doing to tread more lightly on the Earth.

  • Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council
    National Action Plan for Educating for Sustainability
    The National Action Plan advocates for fully integrating Education for Sustainability (EfS) across the U.S. education system, while realizing, however, that EfS is complex and challenging. The strategies and actions outlined in the plan are essential to truly educate for sustainability now and into the future in the United States. The report suggests that significant shifts are required within our education system and in the systems in which education is embedded. The report outlines a number of strategies for EfS, including preservice teacher preparation, professional development, and teacher evaluation.

  • Every School Can Be A Green School: Getting Started Checklist
    All schools should provide a healthy, welcoming place to learn. Creating a greener school requires action from everyone in the school community. These 12 actions from the Center for Green Schools provides an easy framework to help green your school and enhance environmental responsibility.

  • Green Schools National Network
    The GSNN works with thought leaders to gather, synthesize, generate, and report evidence-based resources that include practical tools, news, and commentary for the green, healthy, and sustainable schools community. The organization offers a “GreenPrint” that serves as a road map so leaders, teachers and students can begin implementing core practices immediately.

  • Manitoba School Recycling Plan
    This guide describes how the actions of students in one school inspired change in an entire school division. As a “how-to” and a “why-to” guide, the authors address many questions about waste reduction.

Find a more comprehensive list of schools and organizations taking action.

Systems Thinking

Curriculum Ideas

Books and Journals
Check this section periodically as we’ll feature the latest recommended readings on education for sustainability.
  • Cloud, Jaimie P., ed. (2017). "Education for A Sustainable Future, Benchmarks: For Individual and Social Learning."
  • Goleman, D., & Senge, P. M. (2015). The Triple Focus: A New Approach to Education. More Than Sound.
  • Kensler, L. A., & Uline, C. L. (2016). Leadership for Green Schools: Sustainability for Our Children, Our Communities, and Our Planet. Routledge.
  • McKeown, R., & Nolet, V. (Eds.). (2012). Schooling for Sustainable Development in Canada and the United States (Vol. 4). Springer Science & Business Media.
  • Nolet, V. (2015). Educating for Sustainability: Principles and Practices for Teachers. Routledge.

To review our comprehensive book list, visit our online LibraryThing catalogue. If you know of a book that should be on our list, contact us


Additional Resources

Learn More about Sustainability
  • PBS Learning Media
    provides more than 450 resources on sustainability, from lesson plans and interactives to videos and more.
  • Tackling climate change through environmental education in a Scottish school
    Read the case study of Lawthorn Primary school in Scotland and how leaders encouraged young people to address climate change by reducing the global footprint of their school. This study draws on three disciplines: environmental education, as the pedagogical approach; environmental psychology, in terms of the health and well-being benefits of learning outdoors; and, environmental governance, in terms of the current governmental and educational support structure that exists for Learning for Sustainability in Scotland.

See our list of Sustainability Organizations to see what others are doing and find out how you can incorporate sustainability into your teaching and into your life.
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