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Seasons and Reasons- Let’s Get Growing and Going! Seasons and Reasons- Let’s Get Growing and Going! Developing hands-on experiential learning opportunities.

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Presentation on theme: "Seasons and Reasons- Let’s Get Growing and Going! Seasons and Reasons- Let’s Get Growing and Going! Developing hands-on experiential learning opportunities."— Presentation transcript:

1 Seasons and Reasons- Let’s Get Growing and Going! Seasons and Reasons- Let’s Get Growing and Going! Developing hands-on experiential learning opportunities for the special-needs classroom. Amy R. Williams Teacher of Students with Emotional and Behavioral Needs Polson Middle School-grades 5-8 406-883-6335 ext. 327 **Photos by Amy R. Williams, using the iPad that was generously provided through donations to Science Horizons Initiative

2 Background Information I am a non-typical teacher because I was a non-typical learner. – This affects EVERYTHING about my teaching philosophy and practices. My students have: – Emotional Needs – Behavioral Needs – Learning Needs – Human Needs (a largely overlooked area, I believe) Reading, Writing and Arithmetic (and Science, Social Studies…) – creates anxiety for my students, resulting in inappropriate behaviors Diverse learners have diverse needs – Visual, Auditory, Tactile methods of educational delivery – If the end result is the same or better, does the journey matter? Alternative teaching for alternative learners! We are Facilitators of Knowledge and Creators of Connections – Youth is sacred, make it meaningful yet magical, give something to believe in

3 Project Synopsis OVERALL LONG TERM GOAL: Develop a year-long program that meets the cross-curricular academic and life-skills needs of diverse learners through experiential hands-on cultural and place-based learning opportunities. Integrate local resources and partnerships to deliver education through: – Hands-on Experiments and Activities – Oral and Visual Information Delivery – Environmental Outdoor Themes with a Focus on the Development of a School Garden & Compost Program

4 Project Synopsis Think BIG ; Start small SHORT TERM GOAL Create a 1 st quarter plan that: – Gets the project started – Creates student ownership – Keeps the momentum flowing, creating energy for continuance – Lays the groundwork for the school year

5 Goals-First Quarter Get the School Garden GROWING AND GOING! Integrate: Local and National Native American Traditional/Contemporary Importance/Uses of Plants, Math, Reading, Writing, Health, Art, Life-Skills, and SCIENCE by planning, creating & utilizing a school garden Lay groundwork for Seasons and Reasons Collaboratively design & build raised beds for growing NOW! Plant for late fall harvest & collection Plant for spring perennials & harvest Collaboratively design, build & use a composting system Develop a game plan for the remainder of the year, based on the trials and tribulations of 1 st quarter. Begin dialog among school & community to aid in cross- curricular-cross-cultural learning

6 Standards Indian Education for ALL : Essential Understandings Don’t be part of the misconception-this is not only for Native Students, it is a Montana Constitutional Mandate that requires schools to teach and meet educational standards regarding Montana Native Peoples and North American Native Peoples This project meets these standards: EU1: There is great diversity among the 12 tribal Nations of Montana in their languages, cultures, histories and governments. Each Nation has a distinct and unique cultural heritage that contributes to modern Montana. EU2: There is great diversity among individual American Indians as identity is developed, defined and redefined by entities, organizations and people. A continuum of Indian identity, unique to each individual, ranges from assimilated to traditional. There is no generic American Indian. EU3: The ideologies of Native traditional beliefs and spirituality persist into modern day life as tribal cultures, traditions, and languages are still practiced by many American Indian people and are incorporated into how tribes govern and manage their affairs. Additionally, each tribe has its own oral histories, which are as valid as written histories. These histories pre-date the “discovery” of North America. EU4: Reservations are lands that have been reserved by the tribes for their own use through treaties, statutes, and executive orders and were not “given” to them. The principle that land should be acquired from the Indians only through their consent with treaties involved three assumptions: I. Both parties to treaties were sovereign powers. II. Indian tribes had some form of transferable title to the land. III. Acquisition of Indian lands was solely a government matter not to be left to individual colonists. EU6: History is a story most often related through the subjective experience of the teller. With the inclusion of more and varied voices, histories are being rediscovered and revised. History told from an Indian perspective frequently conflicts with the stories mainstream historians tell. Information gathered from

7 Standards Cross-Curricular Special Education IEPs –students grades 5-8 Service Areas of Need: Individualized Educational Plan Every student who has a specific disability that qualifies them to receive Special Education Services is required by state and federal law to have an IEP that states their : *Preferences, Needs and Interests- *Present Level of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance (PLAAFP) *Specific Academic and Transitional Measurable Annual Goals (MAG)-unique to them and that align to state and federal academic standards Screenshot Photo from Montana SPED AIM Infinite Campus Database

8 Materials/Resources Needed: Materials to Purchase WR Story…..!.... Dehydrator (top quality) Food Slicer Tools for the garden – We have NOTHING!! – Hand Tools & Gloves – Watering Cans – Hoses/Water Storage – Pruners – Composting Thermometer – Pitch Fork – Wheel Barrow – Shelves for storage Curriculum Cords/Connectors for iPad Keyboard for iPad Resources to Utilize Old adage...It takes a village – New adage-It takes a reservation! Local Help for Fence Install – Partner with CSKT/SKC/FREO Local Help for School Garden – SKC Greenhouse Program – Local Greenhouses – Area Nurseries, Orchards, etc Local Groups and Tribal Leaders – CSKT Natural Resources Volunteers/Partners – School & Community – Parents – Mentor Students And many more…..!..... – Suggestions?...

9 Plans for iPad usage For the Student: Photography Documentation Research Cataloging Communication Teaching Learning Writing Reading Connecting Recording Reward Recreation ……. For the Teacher: Photography Documentation Research Recording Demonstrations Communication Teaching Learning Connecting Inspiring

10 Acknowledgements & Accolades Dr. John Peters MSU Astrobiology Research Center and Thermobiology Institute MSU Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry MSU Office of the Provost Dr. Walter Fleming – MSU Dept. of Native American Studies Dr. Christian Bahn – Adjunct Professor of Chemistry M.A.P.S. Students and Coordinators MSU Extension Offices and Programs

11 Chi-Miigwetch (Gigantic Thanks!) Dr. Charles “Bill” McLaughlin – Adjunct Professor of Chemistry Your Passion and TIRELESS Devotion allows us to focus on the 4-C’s – Connections – Collaboration – Concentration – Cooperation Ms. Tess Corbin – MSU Chemistry Dept. Administrative Assistant Fellow Colleagues and Co-Collaborators – Ruth FerrisCharla LakeKevin Newman Tera FlinkDavid Chalmers

12 MSU Science Horizons Initiative Allows us to: Chi-Miigwetch-A Big Thanks for EVERYTHING!

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