Teaching with care for the planet

or place-based learning or community-based learning.

21st-century education & learning creates space for teachers & students to learn, practice human capacities ( in Finnish or OECD terms we call them 21st-century skills or transversal competencies).

21st competencies accessible at children & young learners understanding, school in Vantaa 2019


  1. The need to be of service: taking care of one self and the ones around you. We learn to be respectful of our own safety, of others safetey and emotional wellbeing. When we are safe and we cultivate awareness to our own emotional theater we also pay attention to others emotions and their own emotions, without confusing them or project them with ours. As we feel safe no matter of the events around, the learning becomes possible. As we learn things from young ages or we unlearn and learn again when we are teens or young adults we practice our human capacities of finding creative solutions to everyday challanges.
  2. Deep care for the place and the nature around ( it is a human capacity) we find it called in the global curriculum, making sustainable decisions. Education today doesn’t have to create a sustainable curriculum( a more top down approach), we need to make space in our daily learning patterns and routines to return to nature and to practice care for the nature.  As human beings are not the only beings practicing learning, more than humans have as well habits of learning, we allow ourselves to get inspired from nature & learn by mimicry. This has been present for a long time in the study of biology for example. 
  3. Entrepreneurship– finding creative solutions from the ecosystem not from ego system, being receptive and learning to listen & care for the community around and make space for students & teachers to solve local social challenges while learning their curriculum (also called community based learning).
  4. Global citizenship– building up collective intelligence ( WeQ). Understanding my own roots, culture so to open to the others’ cultures &believes, values. “ The time of lonely genius is over” ( K Lonka) or my favorite words from P Freire “ The more rooted I am in my location, the more I extend myself to other places so as to become a citizen of the world “ 

I invite you to follow with your own journaling (take a piece of paper or your notebook and a pen) during this interview with Adrian Benea. Adi is from Romania and he is a traveler with more than 10 years of working and living experiences in many different cultures. He resides in the Galapagos Islands where he teaches at a local school following place-based and project-based methodologies and the new contextualized curriculum for Galapagos. He will open a journey to place-based learning with care for the planet through projects that involve the local communities where these projects will be applied. I advise you to take some moments for yourself and stop the video and try to answer the questions for yourself as well. You can also find more about Adi’s platform for re-imagining education here https://indigaia360.wixsite.com/indigaia.


  1. https://indigaia360.wixsite.com/indigaia, a platform for place based learning ideas & projects, contacting Adi Benea
  2. “Pedagogy of the heart”, Paulo Freire book
  3. https://www.darwinfoundation.org/en/blog-articles/547-galapagos-in-the-year-2050-a-vision-from-galapagos-verde-2050

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