Place-based instruction at East High

For the amount of diversity I am surprised at the lack of diversity regarding the teaching methods at East High. Moreover, there is quite a lack of student-based learning. It is very teacher centric which leads me to believe the teachers think student learning either doesn’t work, is too much work for the teacher or teachers just don’t know the value of it. My host teacher, while he does the most that I have seen, says he has so much stuff to teach them sometimes he doesn’t have the time…

One of the things he does that is place-based is he takes the students into the woods across the street to identify plants in the fall before the snow starts. He works on identifying plants in the classroom then takes the students outside to do it for real with their own keys they made in the classroom. This is one of the few opportunities many of those kids will have to spend with nature. It is very place-based and good for the students to understand their real surroundings not just their nintendo (is that outdated?).

4 thoughts on “Place-based instruction at East High”

  1. The nofrendo is never outdated. Say hi to Janice Crawford and to Gary Snyder for me. They are good, adventurous people and probably try to bring student based teaching to their classrooms as much as they can. I think Janice teaches SPED. Gary may be a science teacher. Anyway, I used to live up the street from Gary and he would let me run and ski through his yard to access the Campbell Creek trail. He skis to work at East in the winter.

      1. Dude! That’s great. Wonder if he remembers me? Anyway, we had a mutual friend (Lars Spurkland) but he didn’t know me from anybody when he stopped me during a jog through the neighborhood and asked me if I was going for the Campbell Creek trail. I said yeah and he told me that I could run or ski through his yard anytime. He let anyone go through his backyard to access it. Really cool.

        Nofr(i)endo is Nintendo.

  2. Getting students outside – identifying local plants – creating keys to identify – sounds like great place-based instruction to me! Now, what if you got a local Elder to come to talk about traditional uses of plants? Made salve or balm? Or . . .?

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