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.
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.
As the fiery leaves of autumn linger, drop, and are replaced with hard frosts and dustings of snow, out in the midwest of our country indigenous peoples of the world and their allies have been peacefully rallying together to defend the environment on which we all depend. As the days grew colder, the tension rose. When such conflicts seem worlds apart geographically, it can be hard to figure out one’s own place in such a struggle. That isn’t so this fall for a handful of youth near the easternmost point of our country, over 2000 miles from Standing Rock.