- Great Outdoors
- Food & Drink
- Consuming & Waste
- People Power
- Design & Inspiration
- House & Home
- Energy & Water
Welcome to Real Cool Futures, the Eden Project’s careers web resource for secondary school pupils. Designed to inspire 14-19 year olds about their future, our interactive website invites young people to discover how, during their future working life, they could use their talents and skills to make a positive impact on the planet.
In partnership with practising secondary school teachers, we have developed a number of teaching resources. Our aim is to enable teaching professionals to best use Real Cool Futures in careers education, PSHE and across a range of curriculum subjects.
Real Cool Futures is funded by the Talent and Enterprise Task Force, part of DCSF.
Our resources include an introductory KS 3 & 4 assembly plan (PowerPoint and guidance notes PDF) as well as 50 minute lesson plans (PDFs) and 15 minute lesson chunks (PDFs), covering:
- Careers education / PSHE
- Design Technology
- Graphic Design
- Food Technology
- Enterprise (coming soon)
Resources for both key stages 3 & 4 are available, click here to view and download.
Our case studies:
Gathered from across a range of industries, over 100 written case studies feature on the site, many of them accompanied by short films. Each written case study comprises a personal account of someone’s job, how they got into it, why they do it and how they make a difference. The case studies (mainly in their 20s and 30s) represent a range of skills, qualifications and aspirations; and together they illustrate how diverse the jobs that have a positive impact on the planet can be. Some case studies feature conventional ‘green’ jobs, such as those in forestry or conservation. Many more however are newly evolved jobs, focussed on sustainability or carbon reduction in mainstream companies or in growing environmentally sound businesses looking to tackle the challenges of the 21st century.
Further key education themes that can be drawn from the Real Cool Futures website are:
- Adaptation to 21st century challenges is happening fast and new jobs are appearing all the time.
- The importance of STEM in our ability to tackle 21st century challenges.
- The positive role business can have in helping us adapt to environmental and social challenges.
- Qualifications are important. But so are personal skills and talents like perseverance, determination, flexibilty and creativity.
How to use the website:
The site can be navigated in a number of ways. Seven categories, each representing different aspects of our daily lives, introduce the students to a fresh approach to categorising jobs and careers; House & Home, Great Outdoors, Food & Drink, Energy & Water, Design & Inspiration, People Power. Alternatively users can search for case studies via their interests, talents, skills and potential qualification level, using the keyword tag search tool; more detail can be found on the 'How to use this site' page. Our ‘random job generator’ tool (on the left hand side of the page) provides a further way to discover jobs that young people may never have realised existed!
Why Real Cool Futures?
Many young people are concerned about climate change and the environment, but often can’t see what society is doing about it and, more specifically, aren’t clear about how they could contribute. The belief that as you grow up and take a job you don’t have to leave behind ideals and aspiration to make a positive contribution, sit at the heart of this project. As a society facing the challenges of the 21st century, we don’t have all the answers we require. Real Cool Futures aims to highlight the need and huge opportunity for young people to use their talents, skills and creativity to help build solutions for the future. The website illustrates how, by working for an organisation committed to reducing our impact on the planet, one person really can make a difference.
Why Eden Project?
We are an educational charity that exists to explore our dependence on the natural world. At the heart of Eden is an incredible global garden in Cornwall, home to the world’s largest rainforest in captivity, which explores our dependence on natural resources. Ten years ago the Eden site was a barren, exhausted china clay pit. Now its amazing buildings and gorgeous gardens full of plants from around the world demonstrate that positive change is possible. We want to spread that message of optimism and positive possibilities to students who may never get the chance to come here. We are delighted that the DCSF has enabled us to do that through the creation of this site.
The Eden Project also offers a wide range of educational programmes for young people and schools on site in Cornwall. Click here to find out more about visiting our amazing global garden and environmental education centre with your class.