FIRST HAND LEARNING
Vol. 4, No.
IN THIS ISSUE:
1. REGISTER FOR FHL’S
PDI IN NEW ORLEANS
2. “LINCK” CHILDREN WITH NATURE
3. INFORMAL SCIENCE LEADS TO LEARNING
4. A NEW MINI JOURNAL!
1. ACT NOW
FOR “OUTDOOR LEARNING” AT NSTA
We are looking forward
to a day out at the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans! Won’t you join us?
First Hand Learning is presenting a day-long professional development
institute (PDI) on Wednesday, March 18th as part of the NSTA’s national
“Outdoor Learning: A Path to Science and Inquiry”
will offer practical approaches for using the outdoors to teach science
inquiry and literacy. For a complete description, see: http://www.nsta.org/pd/pdi/2009pdi05.aspx.
The deadline is fast approaching, so act soon. Register for the PDI and
the conference at the NSTA website: http://www.nsta.org.
If you will be attending NSTA in New Orleans, but can’t make it
a day early for the PDI itself, consider attending one of the linked PDI
pathway sessions. For a list of these workshops visit http://www.nsta.org/pd/pdi/2009pathways.aspx#5.
UP TO NATURE
As interest grows
in getting children outside – to play, explore, and learn about
their world, opportunities to help adults encourage and facilitate outdoor
activity are increasing. For example, if you live in the Long Island area,
consider attending a day-long conference sponsored by the Long Island
Nature Collaborative for Kids (LINCK).
"No Child Left Inside: Connecting Kids with Nature" will be
held on March 12, 2009 at the Islandia Marriot. The keynote speaker will
be Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods – Saving
Our Children from Nature Deficit Disorder (see http://richardlouv.com/).
For more information, a list of speakers, and the agenda, go to:
Are you seeking real-world examples of how teachers and schools can use
the local environment more productively? Buffalo Public School #90 staff
worked collaboratively with architects, teachers, and other stakeholders
to redevelop their internal courtyard, designing the area to promote nature
study and integrate outdoor play with their learning objectives. Read
about it in this short, online article: http://www.buffalorising.com/2008/12/landscape-for-learning-school-90-courtyard-transformed.html#SlideFrame_0.
3. THE POWER
OF INFORMAL SCIENCE
A new publication
released by the National Research Council provides more evidence that
informal science experiences can generate interest and enthusiasm for
science and improve learning outcomes for both students and adults. After-school
science programs and visits to museums and zoos are just a few examples
of informal science experiences that can have a positive impact.
“Learning Science in Informal Environments: People, Places, and
Pursuits” can be read for free online: http://national-academies.org/morenews/20090114.html.
Sections include specifying “strands” of science learning
that can be supported in informal settings, ideas for how to increase
participation, as well as suggestions for how to design and sustain effective
4. MINI ACTIVITIES
Winter blues got you
down? Searching for ways to use the outdoors for learning even when signs
of life seem suspended by freezing temperatures? Well, do we have a new
mini-journal for you!
“Bug Hideouts” asks the question “Where do insects go
when winter weather hits?” Each mini-page offers great suggestions
to get kids exploring. Simply download the free mini-journal from our
website, fold it up and go (hats and mittens not provided!): http://www.firsthandlearning.org/minijournal.html
Please note that directions
for folding up the mini-journal are on the webpage. Consider printing
a blank mini-journal (also found there) on the reverse side of “Bug
Hideouts” – that way you’ll have sections to jot down
Mini journals have proven popular with many. A teacher at the Rolling
Hills School in Fullerton, CA uses them as innovative homework in her
mixed-age elementary classroom. See http://m.hood1700.googlepages.com/firstgradehomework.
What innovative ideas have you come up with to offer stimulating homework
that extends children’s science learning? We’d love to hear
your suggestions. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are more free items available on our website. Check out the other
as well as a great selection of downloadable lesson plans at http://www.firsthandlearning.org/free_downloads.html.
First Hand Learning Catalog offers science notebooks, field journals,
hands-on science kits, posters, and more. Go
We hope you found this edition of the Firsthand Learning E-NEWSLETTER
informative. Please contact us with any comments, suggestions, or questions
you may have by emailing us at: email@example.com.
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© 2009 First Hand Learning, Inc.
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