‘Pani Pahar – the Water Curriculum’ by Cambridge University for Indian students
Students and teachers across India now have free access to ‘Pani Pahar – the Water Curriculum’ - a new curriculum on water security and sustainability. This was jointly developed by researchers at the University of Cambridge and the Hearth Education Advisors, a division of Canta Consultants LLP. It is designed for students between the ages of 9 and 15, and is now freely available to students, teachers and schools. The aim of the curriculum is to engage students in experiential learning and to instil in them a sense of responsibility towards water conservation.
The curriculum has grown out of ‘Pani, Pahar – Waters of the Himalayas’, a collaborative research project between the University of Cambridge, The Centre for Ecology Development and Research in India (CEDAR) and Southasia Institute for Advanced Studies in Nepal (SIAS). The project explores the changing landscapes and escalating water crises of the Indian Himalayas. It combines academic research led by Professor Bhaskar Vira and Dr Eszter Kovacs from Cambridge’s Department of Geography with contemporary imagery by photojournalist Toby Smith, which has been exhibited in the UK and India.
The curriculum aims to help students understand water resources and sustainability and how these are impacted by climate change. The detailed lesson plans encourage reflection and research on the human causes of water scarcity, and some of the effects of environmental change on humans and our shared resources. It also helps students understand the meaning of activism, recognise some of the challenges associated with activism, and begin to associate activism with the needs and issues of their school.
The curriculum has three sets, one for each level, each involving a 10-hours contact time with the students. The curriculum is targeted at students of junior, middle and senior level. The curriculum was launched in India earlier this week.