The Environment as an Integrating Context

Last week NMWC staff and the teachers from our spring teacher training (part of the Improving Teacher Quality Grant from the Title II New Mexico Higher Education Department) gathered at Northern New Mexico College for a fantastic environmental education workshop hosted by Dr. Gerald and Grace Lieberman. This workshop taught us how to use the environment as an integrating context (the EIC Model) for teaching standards.

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The EIC Model uses the environment around the school, including the surrounding community, and student-centered, constructivist approaches to engage students while teaching the material that students are required to learn. We think it’s a fantastic idea, and it fits in to our teaching philosophy perfectly.

The teachers who attended teacher training worked on putting together units for their classes this fall. Their students will be very lucky!

Learning the EIC model
Learning the EIC model

At the end of the workshop, teachers presented their plans to the group. We can’t wait to see how these projects will turn out!

Teachers presenting their projects
Teachers presenting their projects

If you want to know more about the EIC model, I highly recommend Dr. Lieberman’s book Education and the Environment. There are many reasons to support environment-based education, and this book highlights them.

Christy

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