Forest Education Foundation Study Tour to USA Forests
Teachers from the Tasmanian Forest Education Foundation, Darcy Vickers and Hannah Kench, have recently returned from a 2 week professional learning study tour in Portland, Oregon, USA. Their tour allowed them to meet many professional educators delivering successful and engaging forest related programs, supporting all levels of schooling. Many of these programs involved the support of trained facilitators and volunteers (often part-time or retired teachers / industry representatives / land owners and interested parents) to deliver education programs to support teachers and students. These partnership programs explore a number of curriculum areas along with agricultural, forest and environmental education outcomes.
Their visit highlighted the many opportunities for developing similar partnership programs in Tasmania, particularly with regards to new openings arising from programs related to revitalising school farms across the State. The systems and processes for developing and delivering programs we have seen have been invaluable. Trees on farms support biodiversity, contribute to farm productivity through shelter belts for increased crop yields and animal welfare or managing areas of native forest or plantations – the opportunities for connecting education programs are definitely worthy of further discussion.
They are looking forward to sharing more information in the coming months, in the meantime you can visit their website at http://www.forest-education.com or Like and Follow them on Facebook (@ForestEducationFoundation) to keep updated.