For the past nine years I have taught fifth grade and elementary science at Mount Madonna School. Sustainability, environmental stewardship and citizenship are not only my own personal values, but also one that are shared by our School community. This conjunction of values was the beginning of our annual fifth grade environmental project, in collaboration with my mentor teacher, Sri Gyan James McCaughan. Together we worked to form a student-led, environmental-based curriculum that would ignite citizenship and incorporate a variety of core-required curriculum in a project-based format. Each year we worked to improve upon this project and find avenues to incorporate technology, collaborate with other teachers and community partners. In the years since Sri Gyan's passing, I have continued this effort to empower students with an ever-evolving project.
As the School's elementary science specialist, I work with first through third grade students once a week in the science lab and children's garden. In this role, I also incorporate the ideals of project-based learning with an environmental emphasis as we explore garden-based nutrition, life and physical science.