New sustainable development goals handbook for early years

Kathy Oxtoby
Wednesday, September 22, 2021

A sustainable development goals handbook for early years has been created as part of a drive to introduce ideas of sustainability to young children.

The Flourish Project, a UK based Community Interest Company (CIC) has collaborated with Montessori Europe to produce the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Handbook for the early years.

The partnership was established to explore ways of introducing the concept of sustainability to young children.

The handbook will accompany the Flourish Project’s existing SDGs Handbook for Primary and Elementary Schools. Both are being offered as a free resource to educators in the lead up to COP26 - the 2021 United Nations climate change conference.



Understanding big ideas

‘We believe that the first six years of life are the ideal time for such an introduction – because young children are capable of absorbing, grappling with, expressing and sharing their understanding of big ideas,’ said Barbara Isaacs, president of Montessori Europe.

The SDGs were adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030. They are aimed at all ages, including the youngest citizens.


The Flourish Model encompasses all 17 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and ‘puts the wellbeing of the child firmly at the centre of the system’, said Ms Isaacs.


‘Young children are ready for big ideas, it is our role to prepare the environment which offers time and space to explore them and to hear the child’s voice. We hope this handbook will serve as an inspiration and that the suggested activities will be shared with joy and curiosity. The children of today are our future,’ said Ms Isaacs.

More information about the SDGs Handbook for the Early Years here  

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