Environmental Education series in Otherways magazine

This page contains links to my environmental education articles written quarterly since 2010 for the Otherways magazine, published by the Home Education Network in Victoria. Underlying  them, I am inspired by, and a supporter of, the UN Decade of Biodiversity’s theme “Living in harmony with Nature”

My environmental education activities and resources have been aligned to each year’s special events since 2010. The series of articles is below by year. One of my aims in this series has been to provide access to quality information about biodiversity and other environmental issues, ways to understand it and get involved in it to people who are isolated for one reason or another.

2023 – International Years of Millets and of Dialogue as a Guarantee for Peace.

IYM2023_H_Col_EN (3)

One focus of 2023 was the food group ‘Millet’ and its importance in traditional societies as a food staple and growing recognition of its potential for global future food security.  There were three articles for this covering such traditional food sources, their potential for greater use and the challenge of growing and using millet.  The fourth article was on the second focus – for Dialogue as a Guarantee for Peace – sadly at a time when there was a need for peaceful relationships to be developed in several parts of the world. Both these IY’s contributed to Sustainable Development Goals.

2022 – International Years of Basic Sciences for Sustainable Development, of Glass and of Artisinal Fisheries and Aquaculture

Screenshot 2021-12-13 at 14.36.01The 2022 year focused on ‘science’ and its importance in improving all aspects of life, many of which are included in the Sustainable Development Goals – a complement to ending 2021 with ‘creativity’.  All articles covered the basic sciences and the last two integrated this with two more concurrent IY’s: Glass, and 77-iyog-2022-logoArtisanal Fisheries.  Sustainable development ideas come from reusing/recycling resources, planning for flooding and sustainable food production.  IYAFA_Color_H_EN

All four of these 2022 environmental education articles provided activities and links to many websites to support and extend learnings about their topics.

 2021 –  International Years of Fruits and Vegetables and of the Creative Economy for Sustainable Development 

IYFVlogoA 2021 year focused on fruits and vegetables for their health benefits and issues in sustainable production seemed like a good follow-up to 202o’s year of plant health. Three articles covered basic ideas about fruits and vegetables as foods and in food groups, in a food production system and the importance of eating locally and seasonally to be more sustainable consumers. The last article focused on the lesser promoted Creative Economy year, which seemed to have been lost in the stresses of Covid 19. 2021IYCESD logo

All four of these 2021 environmental education articles provided activities and many links to websites to support and extend learnings about their topics.  As the articles couldn’t be loaded in one file, please go to the 2021 page to find their links.


2020 –  Bushfires, Covid-19 and the International Year (IY) of Plant Health

IYPH_Web_Button_Vertical_210x210px_ENWhen the 2020 International Year of Plant Health (IYPH) began, Australia was suffering terrific bushfires. While all four articles this year did relate to the IYPH, it may not have seemed so. Bushfires, tiny organisms like viruses, and exponential growth threats do not  just attack human health, but also that of plants.  So improving understanding of these and protection against them may be a background to the lesser noticed ones affecting plant health.  All four of these 2020 environmental education articles had provided activities and extensive links to websites to support and extend learnings about their topics.

IYIL2019logo_enquarter2019–  the International Year of Indigenous Languages.

Our cultural environment is transmitted through languages, especially spoken ones.  Around the world concern is developing for the loss of speakers, heralding their extinction and the reduction in the diversity of human languages. This also takes with it ways of seeing and communications sciences, histories and stories.  All four environmental education articles in 2019 explored resources and activities for learnings to support the International Year of Indigenous Languages (IYIL), especially  Australian ones.

2018 –  the International Year of the Reef.

As 2018 became the (3rd) IY of the Reef a little later than other IY’s, the 2018 series of articles may seem a bit eclectic.  I took the 2017 IYoSTD aim of cultural awareness into 2018 for developing some home cultural awareness for March’s Harmony Day.  To explore the IYoR through remaining articles, the focus was on understanding two threats:  human plastic pollution and ground-shaking Nature. There is so much complexity in these topics!

2017 – the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development (IYoSTD)

Tourism is big business and the UNESCO IYSTD aimed to focus on how tourism, how it can impact on recipient places and how we as tourists could contribute better to improving these places and their peoples.  These articles  for ‘Otherways’ were written to introduce the IYSTD  by putting ‘tourism’ into the new F-10 Victorian curriculum, the Australian Curriculum priority for Sustainability Education, and  introducing the new 2030 UN Sustainable Development Goals, while exploring where we Australians may travel locally through to globally, as different types of tourists, and what behaviours we could adopt.  :

LOGO_IYP_en_print-horizontal2016 – the International Year of Pulses (IYP).

Living in the Wimmera, I am located in a major Pulse growing region, and currently developing a school education program for this, part of which will be shared in the Otherways series of articles this year.  What are pulses? That’s where I start, linking it with thinking and learning skills:

As the last two years are now Decades, ie of Soils and of Familly Farming , the website Soil Selfies and Family Farming Snapshots  projects continue also.


2015 – the International Year of Soils (IYS). 

Being part of a family farm, an environmental educator and a Geographer, the theme for this IY Soils Healthy soils for a healthy life  is very important, so I  created special projects Soil Selfies, and Snooping into Soils for it and a third enviroed4all(R) website Soils . I hope you will look at that too.  The environmental education articles all focussed on soils:

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2014 – IY of Family Farming; IY of Small Island Developing States

Being part of a family farm and an environmental educator the theme Feeding the world , caring for the Earth for this IY Family Farming is especially relevant to me, so I have created special projects for it and a second website family farms . I hope you will look at that too.  Small Island Developing States does not get much media, so I started with it for these articles in 2014 and added in the IYFamily farming later in the year.

With the centenary of the first departure of troops for the Great War, I also provided History/maths/geogrpraphy/ ICT  activities on the ships, men and horses  and research on-line under “The First Fleet of ANZEF of November 1914″ and “Finding ANZEF faces” in Otherways magazine (issue 142) pp 21-22 and on this webpage at  ANZEF departure


2013  Maths of Planet Earth; IYof Statistics; IY of Water Cooperation 

It is also the year that Victorian schools introduced the Australian Curriculum as AusVELS. National Science Week took for its focus Australian Science Discoveries of the last century.

There is lots to communicate! I began with a focus on the curriculum changes and then moved into activities for the  Maths of Planet Earth, linking the other events in with it as the year  progressed. 

2012  United Nations Decade of Biodiversity,  Australian Year of the Farmer; National Year of Reading

I began with a focus on the UNDB and then added both the national years to this.

ATT00008 iYF logo and address2011   IY of Forests; IY of Chemistry.

This was both the  I continued the series of articles on Biodiversity activities, firstly with a focus on Forests and then combining Forests and Chemistry.

2010  IY of Biodiversity (2010) 

had the themeBiodiversity is life, Biodiversity is our life’. My articles were to encourage observations and caring for living things from experiences in gardens locally.  The articles were:

 * Thankyou to Sue Wight and the Editorial team of Otherways for making this series possible. The Home Education Network is a volunteer organisation, as are the contributions its website http://www.home-ed.vic.edu.au. and articles in its magazine Otherways.  To find Otherways on the web, go to the website and look for back issues under the ‘Resources’ tab with back issues. Copies of Otherways can be purchased online.

for more articles on biodiversity activities, go to  4learning or to the main Biodiversity on farms page

about me and why I have done this:

I live on a farm in the Wimmera, Victoria. I home educated my son for 13 years, and he’s now finished university by on-line  study and is a research scientist.  So I have a real interest in people who are more isolated than city folk.

As an environmental educator, I can offer activities for people to use and adapt. This enviroed4all website aims to do that. I  have been writing a series of articles on environmental education for the Victorian Home Education Network’s magazine, Otherways, * since 2010. This library contains mostly my Otherways series of articles on environmental education, with its focus on Biodiversity and sustainability. You can go directly to the articles below or see a summary on the main page for each year below.



Page updated 25 April 2013, 6 Dec 2013, 7 April 2014, 8 Dec 2014, 20 Jan 2016,  18 feb 2016, 20 Jan 2017, 20 August 2020, 30 December 2020, 3 October 2023, 16 January 2024,


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