Add Some Adventure

Submitted by Brian Zuber on Fri, 2017-07-14 00:00

Both last year and this year, there are tons of takeaways and good ideas to bring to our classrooms through the MILES Adventure workshops, I'm so glad for this program! For me, there are two major takeaways, the first is to add a little adventure into the classroom! Take the kids outside when you can, work hard to schedule a few extra field trips to a natural site, invite some fun guest speakers to class, and maybe start an after-school adventure club with enrichment activities that tie back to content in several of the students' classes.

Another important takeaway, is to frame my units on natural resources, including water and mineral resources, as ecosystem services. Get the kids to shift from seeing ecosystems as another disconnected concept to learn in science class, and to see them as something that provides us with our needs and resources to survive. If we don't take care of our ecosystems and manage them wisely, they won't be able to provide the resources we need to survive and prosper in the future.


Shannon Erickson's picture

I completely agree! If we don't take our students out to appreciate the natural resources we have and make them a priority then we aren't showing our students how great they are and how much we need to take care of them. There are many little ways we can work in ecosystems into our classrooms. This class is a good reminder to do that and good ideas for how to. Thanks for a great week!

I too will try to bring more nature into class than I have previously. I always thought of myself as a teacher who always tries to link learning to nature. However, upon further reflection, my links to nature is usually just a picture, short poem, or something related to setting. None of it really engaged the student with nature. Students weren't asked to reflect or delve into questions of how nature affects humans and society. I suppose that's not all true. We did discuss nature and humans relations to it, but that was all we did. Students never mde nature part of their learning, Here are my ideas from the past week: Students use a phone to take pictures of specific objects in nature. Students record sensory imagery (wind, temperature, etc) at time of photograph. Students look at photograph later that night and complete specific activity. By having the students take the picture, instead of just showing them a picture in class, students will take ownership of the activity. After a few photography assignments, students will look ,ore closely at nature. As an ELA teacher, I could go longer by making a short story, but first taking pictures of all the important outdoor settings. It seems modern society is building a wall between school and nature, but hopefully weeks like this will help teachers put some adventure into he classroom.