Step 4 Curriculum Links

Including environmental education in a variety of different curriculum areas educating a variety of year groups during the school year.

Curriculum Links Criteria

In order to achieve the international Eco-Schools Green Flag award your school must meet the following criteria.

  • Environmental issues related to any of the ten Eco-Schools topics have been covered in your school’s curriculum at least three times.
  • Evidence of environmental curriculum links (ideally student’s work) is displayed on your Eco-Board (physical or digital).
  • Optional for first Eco-Schools Green Flag: Your three pieces of curriculum link evidence is from different year groups and subject areas.

Curriculum Links Criteria Guidance

Further information about the Eco-Schools criteria for Step 4: Curriculum Links.

  • Your three pieces of curriculum link evidence do not have to correspond with the topics you have chosen to work on in your Action Plan.
  • The Eco-Schools Team understand that some specialist settings may have a bespoke curriculum, and environmental work linking to this curriculum is perfect.
  • We recommend beginning to gather your Curriculum Links and completing this section of the Eco-Schools application form as early as October.

Eco-Schools Team Tip

Host an Eco-Day or Week in your school when all lessons are based around environmental issues. This is both celebratory and perfect for making sure every student and teacher in school is involved in environmental education. It also makes it easy to gather all the evidence you need for Step 4 in one go!

Curriculum Links Resources

A list of Curriculum Links resources you will be able to access when you login to your Eco-Schools account.

  • Secondary Curriculum Links Staffroom Handwritten. A document to place in the staffroom to make gathering Curriculum Link evidence easy.
  • Secondary Gathering Curriculum Links Editable. A document to e-mail to staff members to make gathering Curriculum Link evidence easy.

Curriculum Links FAQs

Everything your Eco-Coordinator and teachers need to know about highlighting Eco-Schools in the curriculum.

Do the curriculum links have to specifically relate to the Eco-Schools programme?

No, if you want to create lesson plans based on the Eco-Schools programme, brilliant, the programme lends itself well to this, however, any work linking to any our ten topics is fine.

Does our curriculum evidence have to be from the same topics we have in our Action Plan?

No, it can be from any of our ten topics.

How many pieces of evidence do we need?

You need to gather three pieces of curriculum evidence for your Eco-Schools Green Flag application.

How can we find this evidence?

If your school teaches science or geography (hopefully!) it should be easy to find examples of work linking to any of the ten Eco-Schools topics.

Can all of our evidence be from the same class?

For your first Eco-Schools Green Flag, yes! For Eco-Schools Green Flag renewals, no, we would like to see evidence from different age groups. Why not try using one of the resources listed above to help you easily gather evidence from other year groups?

We have found our evidence, what next?

We would like you to display this evidence on your Eco-Board: you can do this by choosing one or two good examples of pupils’ work and photocopying them for display.

Curriculum Links Examples

Oulton Academy, Leeds

The entire Geography Curriculum at Royds School in Leeds has been created around a 5 year global citizen concept where students learn why they are taught each topic and how learning about each topic will make them better global citizens. The curriculum ranges from addressing misconceptions about low income countries to how Biodiversity could be improved in tropical rainforests. Before beginning to work on each topic, students complete a global citizen sheet which anchors their learning into something meaningful and personal to them. This demonstrates that they can complete environmental actions at a local level that will have a lasting, global impact. Royd's holistic approach to their geography curriculum truly allows students to recognise that they are a part of global community, which extends far beyond their Leeds neighbourhood!
You can view a section of their curriculum in the image, or click the link below to view the full version.

Full Version

Evergreen School, Warwick

Students and staff at fantastic Evergreen have a whole curriculum area titled, 'Saving Our Planet,' and created this display to highlight their work. The board includes artwork and posters students designed and created to raise awareness of environmental issues amongst their schoolmates and staff members. It also includes letters pupils wrote to Sir David Attenborough in English lessons. These letters thanked him for: making enjoyable programmes, raising awareness of environmental issues and generally being a massive inspiration to all of Evergreen's students and staff! Amazingly, Sir David replied thanking students for their kind words and saying that he is glad Evergreen students are doing their best to protect the planet too!

School Website

St Mary's School for Girls, Colchester

In Science Study Skills Year 8, at St Mary's Colchester, made and set up tunnels to catch footprints of mammals and record the biodiversity within the school site.
Choosing different, animal-friendly locations throughout the school grounds, small mammals were baited with a selection of foods including: suet bird food, sunflower seeds and different types of dog food. Each of the locations, including food details, was plotted on a map of the school.
Surrounding the food was triangular tunnels, made from old photocopier boxes with paper placed inside and fabric coated with eco-ink (vegetable oil and charcoal powder) placed either side of the tunnel. Each was left for three nights before footprints were collected.
Using identification guides, students found hedgehogs, mice, cats and foxes (who destroyed one of the tunnels!) were all present in their school grounds. Further research is planned during different seasons, with different sized tunnels and using a trail-cam to photo any visitors.

School Website

Durham Federation, Durham

The Durham Federation decided to celebrate World Ocean Day to highlight the beauty, wealth and importance of our oceans. Alongside national events, staff from each subject area planned curriculum challenges and activities for students to participate in on a local level - collecting all the curriculum evidence needed for an Eco-Schools Green Flag in one day and proving that environmental issues don’t have to be confined to Science or Geography!

Pictured is a Creative Writing competition planned by the English department. In maths pupils were asked a variety of questions based on how long plastic takes to decompose. In science students researched how animals have adapted to live in the deepest parts of the ocean. In PE students practiced mindfulness alongside world champion free-diver Hanli Prinsloo. Graffiti with a powerful conservation message was created in art. History focused on historic naval battles, French on eco-vocabulary, religious studies on water-based symbolism and music on ocean-inspired classical music… even lunchtime staff got involved by planning a plastic-free service.

School Website

Villiers High School, Southall

Miss Murphy, the fantastic Eco-Coordinator at Villiers High School, is an art teacher; so as part of Villiers' first-ever, termly Eco-Day the Eco-Committee decided to host an eco-art competition. The art competition focused on raising awareness of recycling and waste in the school. The Eco-Committee were overwhelmed by the positive response to the competition - over 270 students submitted an entry and of these 270 entries a shortlist of 60 was created. It was left up to the Eco-Committee, 5 Ealing Councillors and Mrs Sharma (Villiers' Head Teacher) to select the winning designs from the shortlist.
The winning designs chosen, were then installed by Ealing Council on a large recycling container in Southall, to share Villiers' message of saving our planet with their local community.

School Website

Yarm School, North Yorkshire

As part of GCSE DT, students where asked to relate their projects to an area of sustainability. The students researched recycled materials and used these materials to create the products they had designed.

School Website

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