Join us for this day-long conference for educators who are redefining what’s possible in elementary education. As we build school programs around place-based social studies, outdoor science lessons, Forest Fridays and more, we’re connecting children to the natural world, local communities and big ideas.
Morning Film Premiere:
Turning School Inside Out, Chris Hardee, filmmaker & Antioch alum, High Cairn Films, Chesterfield, NH
What happens when a school purchases a parcel of adjacent land and commits itself to figuring out how to use that land to improve student learning and well-being? This short film follows teachers, administrators, parents and community members at the Chesterfield School (K-8) as they create outdoor education initiatives for students across the grades utilizing land adjacent to the school. Following the film, conference participants will hear from a panel of principals and teachers who are at various stages of transforming their schools’ curriculum and culture to be more nature- and place-based. Time will be provided for questions from the audience.
Panelists: Patty Collins, 5th/6th grade teacher, Reading Elementary School, Reading, VT; Sharyn D’Eon, principal, Chesterfield School, Chesterfield, NH; Conor Driscoll, principal, Gill Elementary School, Gill, MA; Amy Randall, kindergarten teacher, Chesterfield School, Chesterfield, NH.
Our afternoon program begins with a Key-NOT! Paul Bocko, faculty member in the Education Department at Antioch University New England, will facilitate an activity that engages conference participants in networking discussions designed to spark ideas about ways we can better form connections to our local history, environment, culture, economy, literature and art. We will expand on the morning panel discussion topic: Turning School Inside Out. Whether you are a beginner, expert, or somewhere in-between, each of us will have a voice in this lively conversation!
Searching for Evidence of Wild NH Mammals Outside Our Schools
Janet Altobello, School Program Director and Jenna Spear, Teacher-Naturalist, Harris Center for Conservation Education, Hancock, NH
Upland: An Outdoor Campus
Nora Gordon and Paul Dedell, 7th/8th grade teachers, Hilltop Montessori School, Brattleboro, VT
Fun with Leaves… Anywhere!
Sarah Wilson, Environmental Artist, Antioch University New England, Keene, NH
Take it Outside: How Nature Can Transform Behaviors Inside the Classroom
Janis Lilly, Program Coordinator, The Upper Room: a family resource center, Derry, NH
Math in the Outdoors
Sam Sintros, 4th/5th grade teacher, The Grammar School, Putney,VT
Place-Based Learning with Museums
Jenna Carroll, Director of Education, Historical Society of Cheshire County, Keene, NH
Jason Lovett and Adam Altshuler, Kindle Farm, Newfane, VT
A Recipe for Improving Wildlife Habitat: An Interdisciplinary Unit
Laura White, 5th grade teacher, Chesterfield Central School, Chesterfield, NH
The Forest is Our Classroom: Learning Beyond the Classroom Walls
Janis Boulbol, 6th grade teacher, Sharon Elementary School, Sharon, VT
Growing in the Garden
Jean Kayira & Elizabeth McCann, Advisers and Janessa Palmer & Anna Turkle Co-Coordinators, Community Garden Connections, Antioch University New England, Keene, NH
Poetry in Place
Meggie Donovan, 6th grade teacher, Heronfield Academy, Newcastle, NH
There’s Fungus Among Us: So Study It!
Robin Huntley & Sarah Schrader, 3rd/4th grade teachers, Juniper Hill School for Place-Based Education, Alna, ME
Place-Based Forest Study
Cristina LaRue, 7th/8th grade teacher, Mountain Village Charter School, Plymouth, NH