Making a Student’s Dream Come True with TREE in Milbridge

Making a Student’s Dream Come True with TREE in Milbridge

If a child came to you with a dream about “someday,” wouldn’t you want to help make that dream come true? Cobscook Community Learning Center’s Transforming Rural Experience in Education (TREE) program is working on accomplishing just that by listening to local students and helping weave their voices into the academic goals of their classrooms through their “Somedays” project. TREE realized when a Milbridge Elementary School 3rd-grader announced her wish for an outdoor shelter at school that Maine Outdoor School could help make that dream come true, so TREE provided the funding for Maine Outdoor School to lead a two-part program for her whole class of  Milbridge 3rd-graders.

Harrington Students Head Outside with MOS for a Second Time

Harrington Students Head Outside with MOS for a Second Time

For a second year in a row, all Harrington Elementary students got to explore the woods around their schoolyard with Maine Outdoor School. Activities and learning standards varied from class to class, but all students experienced the natural wonders hidden on Harrington Elementary’s campus while focusing on outdoor exploration and understanding.

El Bosque de Nosotros/ The Forest of Us

El Bosque de Nosotros/ The Forest of Us

Maine Outdoor School and Mano en Mano led a free, bilingual 4-day program series on weekends in May and June 2018 focused on learning about the importance of diversity in nature and in human communities with funding from the Maine Community Foundation. Through this program series, students not only learned about how diversity yields natural and human resilience while valuing their own differences, but also were exposed to a variety of local hiking trails and preserves that they can visit with their families and friends.

Pembroke Students Learn about Birds in Cobscook Bay

Pembroke Students Learn about Birds in Cobscook Bay

In collaboration with Cobscook Community Learning Center and the Downeast Spring Birding Festival, Maine Outdoor School was able to provide two free programs for the 5th and 6th-graders from Pembroke Elementary School in May 2018. In an effort to get Cobscook Bay area students engaged in the diversity of birds that migrate through the area this time of year, the programs were designed to complement the Birding Festival, which people attend from around the country.

Teachers Learn about Resilience at Jonesport Elementary School

Teachers Learn about Resilience at Jonesport Elementary School

As the school year was winding down and spring was winding up in May 2018, a group of Jonesport Elementary School teachers worked with Maine Outdoor School Co-Founder/Co-CEO Hazel Stark to learn about how they could build resilience in their students through outdoor learning. 

Forest Detectives in the Cold at Cave Hill School

Forest Detectives in the Cold at Cave Hill School

As the days grew longer, albeit colder and snowier, a group of “Forest Detectives” at Cave Hill School sought to learn how our outdoor neighbors survive the Maine winter during our 8-week after school series there from January through March.

Ella Lewis School Students Brave Depths of Winter with MOS

Ella Lewis School Students Brave Depths of Winter with MOS

While some mammals of the Maine woods spend their winters hibernating in a warm den, 25 of Ella Lewis School’s intrepid 3rd-6th grade after school students did just the opposite this winter. As long as school wasn’t cancelled due to one of our many Nor’Easters this year, no amount of ice and snow could keep these kids inside as they unceasingly pursued an answer to winter’s persistent question: How do animals survive despite the frigid temperatures and scarce food?

Building Resilience at Peninsula School Part 2

Building Resilience at Peninsula School Part 2

The sun sets rapidly Downeast in the winter—especially after school. In the waning light, snow, and cold, an intrepid group of 4th-6th graders at the Peninsula School explored the forests around the school for ways that they could give back to their community.

Unlocking Nature's Mysteries with Mountain View School

Unlocking Nature's Mysteries with Mountain View School

From November 2017 until early January 2018, a hardy group of Mountain View Elementary School students became “Forest Detectives” during an 8-part Maine Outdoor School after school series. For an hour each week, students explored, learned, played, and journaled about the forest lives around their school.

Building Resilience: Peninsula School’s After School Program

Building Resilience: Peninsula School’s After School Program

“Can we do science today?!” asked one especially inquisitive student as I stepped into the after school session at the Peninsula School in Prospect Harbor to gather up my group. Lucky for him, science was at the core of what we were doing that day and every other day during this after school series.

“Forest Detectives” at Mountain View School Discover Bugs, Fungi, Mammals, and Birds

“Forest Detectives” at Mountain View School Discover Bugs, Fungi, Mammals, and Birds

Starting in early November 2017, a hardy group of Mountain View Elementary School students became “Forest Detectives” during an 8-part Maine Outdoor School after school series. For an hour each week, students have been exploring, learning, playing, and nature journaling about the forest lives around their school as afternoon daylight diminished.

Reflections from a MOS Outdoor Educator

Reflections from a MOS Outdoor Educator

This summer, I was hired by Maine Outdoor School to design and lead outdoor classes at the 2017 Blueberry Harvest School. Here are my reflections on the experience.

Beals Elementary Students Hike and Learn on Great Wass Island

Beals Elementary Students Hike and Learn on Great Wass Island

Beals Elementary students did not stay inside to read about science in September 2017; Maine Outdoor School took Beals students in grades K-8 to the Great Wass Island Nature Preserve to learn geology and natural history through games, acting, exploration, art, and observation.

Eclipsed: Week 4 of Blueberry Harvest School 2017

Eclipsed: Week 4 of Blueberry Harvest School 2017

This week began with the “Great American Eclipse” of August 21st, which offered an ideal outdoor learning opportunity. From eclipse observation to mosquito science to nature art, students experienced a fitting conclusion to Blueberry Harvest School 2017.

A Sense of Wonder for the Commonplace: Week 3 of Blueberry Harvest School 2017

A Sense of Wonder for the Commonplace: Week 3 of Blueberry Harvest School 2017

With the start of the third week of Blueberry Harvest School, the students and the weather gave hints of a reflective conclusion to summer. While the youngest students took a deep dive into three of the common forest lives they had been seeing, the older students considered the needs of plants and decomposition, and the oldest students explored the mutually reliant world of blueberries and humans.

Poetry, Music, Math, and More: Week 2 of Blueberry Harvest School 2017

Poetry, Music, Math, and More: Week 2 of Blueberry Harvest School 2017

The bold yellow flowers of our native goldenrods brightened up fields and roadsides as Blueberry Harvest School  students learned about life cycles, seasons and weather, and relationships between living things during the second week of August 2017.

Learning from Each Other: Week 1 of Blueberry Harvest School 2017

Learning from Each Other: Week 1 of  Blueberry Harvest School 2017

While August days are hot, nights become notably crisp and cool, red maple trees begin to blush with the telling color of a closing season, gardens become full of their bounty, and many animals begin their annual migration to follow the sun. This migration is a reality for many of our feathered friends, such as geese, loons, and warblers, but is also a reality for individuals of our own species.