Compass Education Level 1 Workshop

Workshop Overview

Are you looking to build a culture of sustainability in your school?

Do you want to empower your educators and equip them with tools for transformative learning?

Do you want to support students with the skills they need to meet our current and future global challenges?

This 2-day workshop is designed by educators for educators. In this workshop, participants will explore the concept of sustainability with a specific emphasis on the role of education and the use of systems thinking to enhance student learning. Educators will be equipped with a suite of systems thinking tools to enable them to help students develop the knowledge, skills and dispositions necessary to participate in a complex and interdependent world. The course will be a mix of theory and practice; educators will see examples of these tools in practice and be invited to innovate and strengthen their lessons, units, and programs.

Whether you are running a school, facilitating a conversation in your classroom or working with young people in other contexts, this course is for you!

Services Compass Education sustainability education

This workshop is also available online. Click here for more information and upcoming courses.

Learning Outcomes

In this workshop, you will…

• Discuss the imperative for sustainability education in a global context
• Identify sustainability dispositions and examine their compatibility with your personal educational philosophy and institutional values
• Understand the relationship between sustainability and systems thinking
• Explore the educational uses of systems thinking tools
• Discover how sustainability habits of mind can be integrated into teaching and learning
• Develop unit/lesson plans to include sustainability perspectives and systems thinking tools in your classroom

What will you take away from this course?

• A practical understanding of sustainability and systems thinking
• Powerful conversations and practical analysis of your educational setting
• Useful tools that can be integrated into any curriculum and every class level
• Access to our database of educator sourced lesson plans
• Professional networking with a global cohort of educators
• Receive a Compass Education Level 1 “Compass Practitioner” Certificate of Participation
• Become eligible for advanced learning opportunities and a pathway to becoming a Compass Facilitator

Who should participate?

Educators and program leaders who want to integrate sustainability education and systems thinking into their teaching practice. Curriculum leaders and administrators who are interested in understanding what the practical application of sustainability education looks like.

Time Expectations

This workshop is hosted by a school or organization with 12 hours of content over 2 days. Contact [email protected] for information about hosting a workshop at your school or info on where the next workshop will be.


Qualify to apply for Compass Education Level 1 “Compass Practitioner” Certification which can lead towards certification as a Compass Trainer (if all requirements are complete).

1-1 Facilitator Support

This course is unique from many online courses because of the focus that we place on supporting our participants in their learning journey. Every participant will be assigned a mentor/facilitator whose educator experience most aligns with theirs. Your facilitator will accompany you throughout, providing personalized feedback and the opportunity to dive deeper based on your context.

Lesson Outlines

Compass Education Level 1 Onsite

Module 1: An Intro to Sustainability

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to:

  • Create your own definition of holistic sustainability.
  • Explain your role as an educator in building a sustainable world.
  • Reflect on your educational philosophy and its connections to sustainability.
Compass Education Level 1 Onsite

Module 2: Sustainability in My Context

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to:

  • Understand the Sustainability Compass as a systems thinking tool.
  • Apply the Sustainability Compass to a commonly encountered situation.
Compass Education Level 1 Onsite

Module 3: The Sustainability Compass

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to:

  • Identify a range of methods for utilizing the Compass to support teaching & learning
  • Apply the Sustainability Compass to an example either in your own life or in the classroom.
Compass Education Level 1 Onsite

Module 4: The Systems Iceberg

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to:

  • Define systems thinking.
Compass Education Level 1 Onsite

Module 5: Systems Thinking Tools

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to:

  • Explain the Iceberg Model, including the different levels and how they’re connected.
  • Apply the Iceberg Model to an example either in your own life or in the classroom.
  • Describe the educational uses of Behavior Over Time Graphs (BoTG).
Compass Education Level 1 Onsite

Module 6: Action Planning

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to:

  • Describe the educational uses of Causal Loop Diagrams.
Compass Education Level 1 Onsite

Module 7: Join the Movement

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to:

  • Identify habits of mind that promote system thinking and sustainability.
  • Create an action plan for how to use the Compass Tools in your classroom.
  • Recognize the impact of global collaboration and opportunities for sharing.
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Workshop in Action


Laurence Myers

Compass Facilitator

Kath Lane

Compass Facilitator

Elaine Reimann

Compass Facilitator

Gitanjali Paul

Education Program Manager, Compass Facilitator

Kate O'Connell

Board Member, Compass Facilitator

Michelena McPherson

Compass Facilitator, Compass Engagement Group (Middle East & Africa) Leader

Kate Doré

Compass Facilitator, Compass Engagement Group (Asia-Pacific) Leader

Lynda Rolph

Compass Facilitator

Michael Johnston

Compass Facilitator

Teresa Tung

Executive Committee, Compass Facilitator

Karen Virta

Compass Facilitator

Mark Mains

Compass Facilitator

Tom McLean

Compass Facilitator

Nicole Swedlow

Executive Director, Compass Facilitator

Oscar Akerberg

Compass Facilitator

Kirsty Shakespeare

Compass Facilitator

Lucy Thompson

Compass Facilitator, Compass Engagement Group (Europe) Leader

Glenn Chickering

Compass Facilitator

Michael Lees

Compass Facilitator

Questions? We’d love to hear from you.


You can expect to feel comfortable using several new systems tools and integrating them in your classroom lessons.   There are quite a few other outcomes depending on how you show up for the course and what most captures your interest. 

Yes, we offer the same course as a regular (7-weeks) or intensive (2 weeks) online course.  See the Level 1 online course page for more infomation. 

To become certified by Compass Education as a Compass Practitioner, you must:

  • Complete Compass Practitioner (Level 1) course
  • Complete all modules in the course and submit your lesson plan that uses at least one of the systems thinking tools you learned in the Level 1 course.  Your submission will be evaluated by our facilitators who will authorise your certification. 

Yes, in most schools this course would qualify.  Every school is different so please check with your school and reach out to our admin team if you have any questions. 

Yes!  Compass Education offers several opportunities for larger numbers of participants in both virtual and in person formats.  Please get in touch.