Books and reports

Guidelines and recommendations for reorienting teacher education to address sustainability 2005 UNESCO

This report recommends changes to teacher education institutions to promote the incorporation of sustainability into their teacher education programs. Challenges to bringing about change are also discussed. The report provides a very comprehensive discussion about the many challenges and barriers encountered by change agents in universities in the area of sustainability education. The recommendations are far reaching. (pdf available on request)

Learning for Sustainability 2006 Peter Senge et al The Society for Organisational Learning (SOL Inc) Cambridge, MA.

This is an excellent book with short case studies on various sustainability issues relevant to the workplace. Particularly good is the focus on the importance of values in pursuing successful sustainability initiatives. Very engaging.

Education for Sustainability in the Primary Curriculum: A Guide for Teachers 2009 Michael Littledyke et al Palgrave Macmillan, South Yarra.

There are many useful examples of EfS activities in this book written by Australian academics that could be applied in the secondary sector as well. The book covers the range of disciplines taught in schools from Maths to Science to Creative Arts and more! There is also an introductory section on main themes and issues in EfS. Highly recommended.

The Transition Handbook: From oil dependency to local resilience Rob Hopkins 2008 Transition Network, Padstow, Cornwall.

There are a number of activities suitable for school students in this book that promotes a positive approach to the dual challenges of the future: climate change and peak oil.

Living Values Activities for Children Ages 8-14 2000 Diane Tillman HCI, USA (UNESCO funded) plus
Living Values Activities for Young Adults 2000 Diane Tillman HCI, USA (UNESCO funded)

Both these books have many original activities that embed sustainability values for a just society across all disciplines. Highly recommended.

The Sustainable Self: A personal approach to sustainability education 2011 Paul Murray Earthscan, UK.

This book tackles the topic of personal sustainability. Packed with many interactive activities which are available free online, it is highly recommended, particularly for academics unfamiliar with sustainability and how it can be incorporated into their teaching disciplines.

Teaching for sustainability: Inquiry, values and action across the curriculum 2012 Jillian Cupitt and Syd Smith Macmillan Education Australia Pty Ltd, South Yarra.

This Macmillan Masterclass publication is easy to read and comes packed with curriculum and practical ideas on how to incorporate sustainability education into your school. Highly recommended.

Outdoor classrooms: A handbook for school gardens 2008 Carolyn Nuttall and Janet Millington PI Productions, Qld.

This book is packed with many creative ideas for practical actions in sustainability at school. Approaches for incorporating activities into the curriculum are also covered. Highly recommended.

Sustainability in Action in Early Childhood Settings 2016 Sally Sneddon and Anne Pettit

This book is a fantastic resource for early childhood teachers as it provides engaging activities for embedding the many facets of sustainability into pedagogy and curriculum. Available from the publisher, Teaching Solutions:

Education for Sustainability and the Australian Curriculum Project Final report for Research Phases 1 to 3 2014 Australian Education for Sustainability Alliance.

Contact the report author for a copy at

Last Child in the Woods: Saving our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder 2005 Richard Louv

This book is full of research and anecdotal stories that point out time and again the importance of contact with nature for children’s emotional, intellectual and physical development. Highly recommended. Available from Amazon.

Earth Education: A New Beginning 1990 Steve Van Matre

This book is recommended if you’re not sure where to start with ‘earth’ or ‘outdoor’ education. It’s in textbook format and rather wordy but has some good outdoor activities for environmental education. Available from Amazon.