Environmental education in non-formal education in the Slovak Republic


The article deals with the material about the environmental aspect in non-formal education of the Slovak Republic based on document analysis and research. It is emphasized that the necessity of formation of ecological world outlook among the younger generation is caused by concrete changes in modern society: exacerbation of conflicts in relations between man and nature, transition to the post-industrial stage of social development and globalization processes. The role of non-formal education in the modern educational environment is identified and the historical facts of the development of non-formal education in the European educational environment are highlighted. The basic normative documents that determine the trends in the field of environmental education of Slovakia, in particular, "Concept of environmental education till 2025", "Law on Environmental Protection of the Slovak Republic" are analyzed. Slovak institutions and organizations providing environmental education in a non-formal aspect are identified which include the Slovak Environmental Agency, the State Nature Conservation of the Slovak Republic, the Bojnica National Park, the Slovak Museum of Nature Conservation and Speleology, the Centre for Environmental Education others. The role of environmental education programs, which contribute to the clear formation of knowledge and understanding of the functioning of the principles of natural systems, nature and environmental issues, is identified; development of critical thinking skills, environmental identity, environmental ethics and aesthetic personality, willingness to solve environmental problems; active involvement of students in the process through storytelling and game activities, the content of which changes according to the season. It is concluded that the main objective of non-formal environmental education in the Slovak Republic is to create a functioning integrated environmental education system in the environmental sector in accordance with international instruments focusing on environmental and environmental education issues. 

Keywords: environmental education, non-formal education, extracurricular education, environmental organizations, Slovak Republic