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Climate Consciousness in the National Constitution: Bhutan at the Forefront


As a Humanities or Social Sciences high school or undergraduate teacher, you can use this set of computer-based tools to teach about the Constitution of a country, the components of a nation’s Constitution, and the recognition that climate change is a fundamental constitutional issue for certain nations. This lesson plan uses the Constitution of Bhutan as an example.

Bhutan transitioned from a monarchy led state to a democratic nation recently and adopted its constitution in 2008. By perusing the Constitution of Bhutan, you can teach your students about various parts of a nation’s Constitution including the preamble, the fundamental rights and duties of a citizen, and principles of state policy amongst others. This lesson plan includes a tool to study the constitutions of different nations and to compare their national policies on various issues like climate, climate change and the environment. In the Constitution of Bhutan, the promotion of Gross National Happiness (GNH) is a principle of state policy and this lesson plan will enable your students to understand how Bhutan’s GNH is threatened by climate change.

Thus, the use of this lesson plan allows you to integrate the teaching of a climate science topic with a core topic in History/Civics in the Humanities or Social Sciences.

Learning Outcome

The tools in this lesson plan will enable students to:

  1. Define and describe the importance of a country’s Constitution
  2. Learn about the Constitution of Bhutan
  3. Study the Constitutions of different nations
  4. Compare the state policies of different countries on various topics like climate, climate change, and environment
  5. Understand Bhutan’s state policy of achieving Gross National Happiness (GNH)
  6. Describe the fundamental duties of a Bhutanese citizen towards protecting the environment
  7. Explain the effect of climate change on Bhutan’s Gross National Happiness (GNH)

Mapped Sustainable Development Goal(s), apart from 4 and 13


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