Why teachers should be environmental ambassadors
- Prize Category: Environmental Action
- Format: Panel discussion
- Country: United Arab Emirates
- Languages: Streamed live in English with automated captions in Arabic, English, French, Filipino, Hindi, Japanese, Malay, Portuguese, Serbian, and Spanish.
- Learn more about the Top Ten Shortlisted Schools in the Environmental Action category on the World’s Best School Prizes website.
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About the school
GEMS Legacy School, a private K-12 school in Dubai, UAE, was the first school in the world to have every teacher recognised as a UN CC: Learn climate change ambassador and the only school that was represented and recognised for its initiatives at COP 25 and COP 26. For the past three decades, the school has made strides to build a reputation as an environmentally conscious organisation and weave climate-focused classes into its curriculum.
The school’s staff champion numerous initiatives to support a sustainable planet. Their ‘Plant a Legacy’ campaign works with 42 countries to plant trees to restore deforested areas; each year more than 18,000 trees are planted. The school placed E-waste bins around campus in a bid to encourage students and families to recycle E-waste. It also has an in-house garden patch where students can appreciate working in a green, open space and grow vegetables.
GLS is growing its global humanitarian efforts in sustainability through collaborations with other schools in the form of events and projects like School Conference of Parties Exposition (SCOPE) and GEMS Global Ambassadors’ Society (GGA).
A few of the initiatives undertaken under SCOPE and GGA include: Global Twinning Projects: a focus on networking with schools and organisations in more than 10 countries to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals; Sustainable Recipes: a focus on creating, publishing, marketing and influencing recipes and eating habits with zero waste at its core; and Plogging: a focus on combining exercise and picking up litter to clean up beaches and open spaces.
GEMS Legacy School also collaborates with students from sister schools in the UAE, India, Australia and the UK on a project called the ‘The Climate Diaries,’ a series of climate stories, illustrations and thoughts on climate change written for children around the world.
Join us as we discuss why teachers should be environmental ambassadors.
Moderator: Nisha Mohsin
Nisha Mohsin is an ardent supporter of innovation in education and believes in using technology to its best for providing opportunities to students to adapt 21st century skills. She is a strong advocate of student agency and works passionately in enhancing student voice through facilitating actions that promote students taking ownership. In her role as an Educational Supervisor, she works at creating an environment that is motivational, encouraging and collaborative. She believes in creating a happy environment for her staff and students that makes them look forward to coming to school every day. Her achievements include being in the Top 100 rankers in the CENTA Global Teaching Professionals’ Olympiads, spearheading the school’s connections and collaboration with the EXPO 2020 Dubai School Program team since 2014, core member of the GEMS Global Ambassadors’ Society and being a part of the organizing committee of the school’s annual conference – SCOPE (School Conference of Parties Exposition).
Speaker 1: Asha Alexander
Asha Alexander is the Principal at GEMS Legacy School, Dubai and the Executive Leader of Climate Change at GEMS Education. She received her Master of Science in Educational Leadership from The Walden University and Master’s degrees in Education as well as English from Bangalore University. With 34 years of experience in the provision of education to K-12 students, she has overseen the school’s transition to an exclusively digital curriculum. Passionate, driven to achieve aspirational goals and ready to take on any challenge, she believes in nurturing empathy, resilience, leadership and sustainable living in every life she touches. She has made presentations at COP 25, 26 and numerous other international webinars and conferences and has conducted workshops on leadership, and change management for several schools and organisations across the world.
Speaker 2: Ranjani Ramnath
Ranjani Ramnath is the Curriculum Developer at GEMS Legacy School. Her interest in the field motivated her to pursue research and qualifications MA and MPhil in Education. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. at Tata Institute of Social Sciences. With her strong educational research background, she leads Action Research guiding teachers to be reflective practitioners to improve their practices, thus preparing students for life. As the Curriculum Developer at GLS, Ranjani has been instrumental in evaluating the impact of e-resources used of technology-enabled tools for teachers and students. She also plays a key role in the GGA Society, GIRLS-Up Program, Empathy Week, Financial Literacy, Plogging, Sustainable Recipes and Twinning- Partnerships, equipping students for the future.
Speaker 3: Hana Mohamed Suneer