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MUSE Virtual School Teaching Sustainability Is a Core Value

Teaching Sustainability - MUSE Virtual School

Are you a parent? If so, think back to your time in school. Did it include many in-depth lessons on environmental issues? The truth is, besides a class discussion on the damage aerosol was causing to the ozone layer, there wasn’t much.

So, it’s not a stretch to say that our children know more about protecting the Earth than we did at their age. In fact, there’s a good chance they know more about green issues than we do even today. A Stanford University study published in the Journal of Environmental Education found that 52% of parents admitted to learning something about protecting the environment from their children. Even more impressive, some of these children were as young as five years old.

 Why Sustainability

Each year, environmental concerns top the Likert scale of importance worldwide. This urgency demonstrates why sustainability is an integral part of the five pillars of learning here at MUSE Virtual School. These guiding principles equip students with the tools necessary to be lifelong learners who live in concert with one another and protect the planet.

Although crucial, it’s not our only reason for emphasizing sustainability. The same Stanford study also found teaching students about conservation increased motivation, improved academic performance, and strengthened life skills such as autonomy, confidence, and leadership. A focus on sustainability also encouraged the development of 21st-century skills, including oral communication, analytical reasoning, and critical thinking.

MUSE Virtual also strives to meet the United Nations sustainable development goals. These are much more than goals to us. This provides guiding principles alongside our educational pillars for our students. These developmental goals ignite passion, action and spark imagination. Some of these goals include zero hunger, good health and wellbeing, affordable and clean energy, climate action, and more. Explore the goals and see how MUSE Schools address these different initiatives here.

Teaching Sustainability

At MUSE Virtual, teaching sustainability is part of the core education at each grade level and practiced with real-world applications. Students collaborate on solution-oriented projects, attend specialized classes, and examine sustainability issues from local and global perspectives.

This commitment to eco-conservation includes implementing green initiatives, such as One Meal a Day for the Planet. Since its introduction, this program has encouraged our virtual community to eat one 100% plant-based meal each day. Along with the apparent health benefits, this becomes a teachable moment where students learn that simple changes in their lifestyle can impact the environment by saving water and cutting carbon emissions. This initiative and academic pillar showcase the ongoing effort to reach the previously-mentioned United Nations sustainable development goals, such as practicing good health and wellbeing, and responsible consumption.

Working in tandem with the One Meal a Day for the Planet initiative is our plant-based cooking class. Students share a virtual cooking experience with award-winning chef Robin Swallow each month. She shows students, parents, and friends how to transform comfort foods into healthy, plant-based meals that taste amazing. Chef Swallow guides the class step-by-step as each family prepares a culinary masterpiece from the comfort of their own kitchen. Students take pride in knowing that their creations in the kitchen are not only good for them, but good for the environment as well.

The MUSE Kitchen is even a 4 Star Certified Green Kitchen with 550 GreenPoints™, and was named the 2016 Greenest Restaurant in the World by The Green Restaurant Association, among several other awards recognizing the MUSE Kitchen for its dedication to healthy school lunches and environmentalism.

It’s More than a Pillar – It’s a Lifestyle

Our school is a high-performance learning lab that teaches eco-literacy, celebrates nature, and champions everything green. We are proud that our conservation efforts are not merely theories taught in the classroom but also translate to actions taken in real life. An example is our effort to make the Calabasas, CA MUSE Virtual School headquarters a beacon of sustainable living and design – an accomplishment that exemplifies our unwavering commitment to this important pillar.

One of the most exciting parts has been transitioning to 100% solar-powered electricity. This process involved installing five beautifully constructed Solar Sun Flowers designed by award-winning director James Cameron, MUSE Co-Founder.

An invention of his, Solar Sun Flowers are shaped like actual sunflowers and move with the sun – as real flowers do. We take full advantage of these functional art pieces by using their unique form and brilliant mechanics as an opportunity for all our students to explore design, engineering, construction, and mathematics.

Our Responsibility

At MUSE Virtual, we provide an education that focuses on strengthening the minds of our students and nurturing the spark of curiosity that exists within their hearts. An essential part of this is ensuring they learn to be good stewards of the world they inherit. Teaching sustainability is central to our core values and instrumental to our mission.

Would you like to learn more about Muse Virtual School? If so, we’d love to speak with you – please don’t hesitate to reach out today, or learn more about our academic programs here.

 

 

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