MEEA's Mission

The Maine Environmental Education Association (MEEA) facilitates and promotes environmental education in Maine through the sharing of ideas, resources, information, and cooperative programs among educators, organizations, and concerned individuals. MEEA is built on the strengths and contributions of our members. For more information about MEEA and to join our organization please visit our webpage.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Register Now for the Better Together Summit!!


MEEA Members and Friends,
We are so excited to invite you to the Better Together Summit at Pineland Farms on October 24-26th. You may have noticed that MEEA's annual spring conference at Chewonki did not take place this year. That is because every six years MEEA has the opportunity to plan and host the New England Environmental Education Alliance (NEEEA) conference in Maine. This year we have planned an incredibly inspiring three day event that should NOT be missed! We are so looking forward to reconnecting with you all at Pineland Farms and encourage you to bring along some new faces to strengthen and broaden our network! Space is limited; register now to secure your spot.

-Sincerely,
The MEEA Board of Directors

Thursday, June 5, 2014

The "Better Together Summit" Workshop Proposals Due June 6th

MEEA Members-
The "Better Together Summit" slated for Pineland Farms October 24-26 is going to be an incredibly powerful event hosted by the Maine Enviornmental Education Association in collaboration with the New England Envrionmental Education Alliance.  We are so looking forward to this regional event that will bring together educators and many people in other sectors who are all working to get people outside connecting in nature, working towards more sustainable, vibrant communities.  If you are interested in presenting a workshop at this event please submit an "I need more time form" to extend the June 6th deadline to June 16th.  Thank you!
https://neeeaconf.wufoo.com/forms/i-need-more-time-proposal-form/

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Announcing Maine Project Learning Tree 2014 Facilitator Training

The Maine Project Learning Tree 2014 Facilitator Training and State Gathering is Official!
 
When: March 21 and 22
For those interested in Early Childhood facilitator training we’ll meet mid-morning on 3/21 with registration for the entire group starting at noon. Our session will conclude no later than 3:00 p.m. on 3/22.
 
Where: Hampton Inn at the waterfront, Bath, Maine
            www.bathbrunswickarea.hamptoninn.com
 
Why: Come together to learn new models of professional development from National PLT. Meet with experienced PLT      facilitators and learn facilitation skills for delivering PLT workshops in your region. But most of all – enjoy the professional and supportive connections found within our ME PLT network.
 
On Saturday morning we’ll visit a nearby research forest to learn about 30 years of data collection and how that relates to the PLT curriculum. Enjoy great food provided by local restaurants and take a morning stroll, run along the Kennebec River or meander down Front Street for some fun window shopping.
 
With thanks to a National PLT Model Programs grant the cost of this overnight training that includes three meals is $45/person to reserve a double room or $90/person for a single room. Further details and updates to follow. Feel free to share this announcement with colleagues.
 
Watch for the registration form to be posted on the PLT page of the MTF website by the end of January.
 
I look forward to seeing you in March – if not before.
 
Always, Pat
 
Patricia Maloney, Coordinator
Maine Project Learning Tree
153 Hospital Street
Augusta, ME 04330
207 626 7990
 

Monday, December 30, 2013

The North American Assocation for Envrionmental Education presents a great video on the value of EE....

Hello MEEA Members...Please check out this awesome short EE video posted by the North American Association for Environmental Education--it demonstrates the power of EE first hand! Keep up the great work changing people's lives!
NAAEE YouTube video

 

Monday, November 11, 2013

NOAA Climate Stewards: A National Education & Action Project.

NOAA Climate Stewards: 
A National Education & Action Project. 
Find Out How To Join this Exciting Community of Learning!


Would you like to increase your climate science knowledge?

Would you like to join a national community of educators interested in projects that make a difference in your local area?

NOAA's Climate StewardsEducation Project (CSEP) provides formal and informal educators working with elementary through university age students with sustained professional development, collaborative tools, and support to build a climate-literate public that is actively engaged in climate stewardship.

After completing minimum requirements, you will be eligible for:
  • Mini-grant funding to develop and implement a climate stewardship action plan
  • Travel stipends to attend and present at key professional development conferences.
  • Special CSEP contests with monetary and educational resource prizes.
To learn more about CSEP and find out how to apply, you must attend one of the introductory program webinars. Click on one of the links below to register for your desired session. Application information will be provided following each webinar session.



Once registered you will receive an email confirming your registration with information you need to join the Webinar.

Please read the “Important notes for participating in the webinar” at the bottom of this email.

The Fine Print… If you decide to join this effort, you will be committing to:
  • Complete and reflect on at least 15 hours of professional development (PD) training in climate science and education in 2014. 
  • Complete and reflect on at least 9 hours of PD training in climate science and education for each additional year you remain with the Project.
  • Fully participate in monthly CSEP national and regional events during evening hours. National level events occur on the first and last Monday evenings of every month.
  • Develop and Implement a climate stewardship project in your school, community, or organization, focused on mitigating the effects of climate change.
  • Use the CSEP Wiki to post PD reflections, classroom activities in climate change, stewardship project plans, progress updates, as well as share resources, comments and results with other CSEP educators.
  • Fully participate in CSEP evaluation efforts
 Applicants selected to participate in CSEP will be notified by the last week of December 2013 

Join us!

Important Notes for participating in the Webinar:

1. Plan to log into the webinar at least 5 minutes before the scheduled start time. GoToWebinar has recently upgraded their software. We want to be sure that your computer has time to access the upgrade and you are able to access the presentation and meeting.

2. Please use the VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) option for this Webinar. If you elect to use the phone number provided for audio (
1-470-200-0305, Access Code 510-317-632), you will be charged for a long distance call.

3. When using the VOIP option for this Webinar, You must use a headset or ear bud-speakers. This will keep your output audio from re-entering your microphone, causing distortion.
4. If you have difficulty logging in to the webinar go to: http://support.citrixonline.com/en_US/Webinar/contact?question=l
  • The ID Number for the Webinar on November 13 is: 784433602. 
  • The ID Number for the webinar scheduled on November 19 is: 303156594 

System Requirements

PC-based attendees
Required: Windows® 8, 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server

Mac®-based attendees
Required: Mac OS® X 10.6 or newer

Mobile attendees
Required: iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phone or Android tablet

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Maine Project Learning Tree and Maine Huts & Trails A professional development opportunity - learn how to build and maintain learning trails and outdoor classrooms!



When: Friday and Saturday, November 1 & 2, 2013 beginning at noon on November 1 and ending at 2:30 p.m. on November 2
Where: Meet at the Gauge Road/Poplar trailhead no later than noon on Friday, November 1st.  The trailhead is in Carrabassett Valley about 20 minutes from Kingfield.  For detailed directions, please see our website at www.mainehuts.org.   We will carpool to the trailhead which is a gentle ¾ mile walk on a wooded trail to the hut.
Who should attend and why: Teams of three from one school or school district must include a teacher, an administrator, and a community leader. Schools across Maine use the outdoors as a learning environment with trails and outdoor classrooms. Many other schools are interested in doing so. With thanks to National PLT and the Davis Family Foundation, we are offering this how-to experience with professional trail crews, a forester and experienced School Forest teachers.  
Cost: $75/team includes an overnight at Poplar Stream Falls Hut, dinner on November 1 with breakfast and lunch on November 2, 2013. Please contact Pat Maloney at meplt@gwi.net or 626 7990 for registration information. This opportunity will be offered on a first come first served basis for seven Maine teams.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Saturday Hike with Harspwell Family Outing Club

Join the Harpswell Family Outing Club for a hike at Long Reach Preserve. The trail at Long Reach Preserve winds its way through upland forest and wetlands to a lovely view of the water. We will hike a 1.5 mile loop trail that has some ups and downs. There is a shorter loop for those who want less of a hike. Bring drinking water, a snack, sturdy shoes, and bug spray. Free.

For more information, contact Julia McLeod at 207-837-9613 or outreach@hhltmaine.org.

Park at the Trufant-Summerton Ball Field on Harpswell Islands Road (Route 24) around 1.5 miles north of the intersection with Mountain Road.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Project Learning Tree Job Opening Washington DC

Hello MEEA Members...Searching for an EE Job?  Here is a great opportunity that just crossed our path-Good Luck!

 

Description

Helios is conducting a search for a Program Coordinator, Education for our client based in the Washington, DC area.  Our client is an award-winning environmental education program designed for teachers and other educators, parents, and community leaders working with youth from preschool through grade twelve. The Program Coordinator provides administrative and programmatic support for the daily operations of the client’s education programs.
 

Responsibilities:
  • Respond to general inquiries about education programs and services, including daily responses to e-mail and phone inquiries
  • Provide support to the Senior Vice President, Education and other program staff as appropriate, including handling travel logistics, scheduling conference calls, conduct research, creating presentations, etc.  
  • Provide support to network of state coordinators, state sponsors, Education Operating Committee members, and partners
  • Coordinate conference planning and logistics for Coordinators Conference and Education Operating Committee meetings, including registration, logistics, and on-site execution
  • Provide support for conferences and meetings including registration, exhibit logistics, and planning
  • Provide the client budget management support including invoicing, check requisitions, budget coding, and accounting discrepancies.
  • Oversee reimbursement and check requests to ensure they are approved and submitted for payment in a timely fashion
  • Assist state programs with the renewing their Memorandums of Understandings with AFF and ensure updated MOUs are on file.
  • Post routine updates to the client website
  • Coordinate the distribution of the Branch newsletter and other email communications
  • Assist with production and distribution of promotional materials
  • Coordinate maintenance and reporting for the client list serve
  • Support grant process for GreenWorks!, GreenSchools!, and MPI
  • Support recognition/awards program
  • Other duties as assigned


Required Skills and Experience:
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, education or environmental studies
  • Knowledge of and familiarity with computerized information systems, including Microsoft Office suite and advanced understanding of Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Experience working effectively with volunteers and staff members
  • Ability to use independent judgment and to manage and impart information to a range of constituencies
  • Excellent editing skills
  • Attention to detail and excellent planning abilities
  • Ability to manage multiple priorities, prioritize, and meet deadlines
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills
  • Personable, outgoing, and flexible with the ability to work under pressure.
  • Time management skills, with the ability to prioritize, coordinate and manage multiple priorities
  • Ability to interact with a wide variety of constituencies, including staff, donors, and customers.
  • Excellent organizational skills with attention to detail and the ability to effectively plan and problem solve
  • A sound work ethic with the ability to act both independently and as part of a team
  • A firm commitment to working in a collaborative environment
  • Ability to speak in front of various groups of constituents
  • Some travel required
  • Here is a link to the job description that has been posted: http://ch.tbe.taleo.net/CH05/ats/careers/requisition.jsp?org=HELIOSHR&cws=1&rid=513 
    All inquires must go through this website.  Thanks!
     

Monday, March 25, 2013

Maine Audubon Job Opening

Looking for an EE Job...here is one that just crossed our desk!
 
Environmental Educator

Maine Audubon seeks an Environmental Educator to coordinate school, afterschool, and camp programs at the Gilsland Farm Audubon Center in Falmouth, ME.  This is a year-round, .75 FTE position with benefits; it entails full-time weeks in the summer and February / April school vacation weeks.  

To apply, send cover letter and resume to: jobs@maineaudubon.org.  Applications are being reviewed currently and will be accepted until position is filled.  Position is anticipated to start in April.  For more information, visit: http://maineaudubon.org/about/employment-volunteering/.  Any job offers are contingent on a successful criminal background check.  Maine Audubon is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

MEEA Announces 2013 Award Winners

MEEA is so excited to announce the winners of our 2013 Environmental Education Awards!  Read on for more information about these inspirational winners!


MEEA has announced its annual awards for 2013's most outstanding environmental educator, school, business and environmental program in the state of Maine. MEEA also presented a special Lifetime Achievement award to Jim Chandler, Director of the Auburn Land Lab.  

L.L. Bean, the winner of the Maine Environmental Education Association Business of Year award, is being recognized for its endless work on improving its sustainability and environmental stewardship, reducing its carbon footprint, supporting sustainable forestry practices, participating in the Maine Outdoor Coalition and its generous charitable contributions to outdoor education and conservation associations in the state of Maine.

The Juniper Hill School for Place-Based Education, of Alna, Maine, the winner of the Maine Environmental Education Association School of the Year, is being recognized for its unique efforts to connect their students to themselves, to each other, and to their communities through studying both natural and human environments in a hands on manner.  The outdoors serves at the school's primary classroom and as a springboard for a curriculum that synthesizes the best of 20th century progressive education with a 21st century place-based curriculum.  The Juniper Hill School has made a whole-school commitment to sustainable practices and seeks to instill in each student a deep connection to the natural world with an ultimate goal of producing well-rounded, critically thinking, environmentally literate citizens.

The Vital Signs Program of the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, the winner of the Maine Environmental Education Association Excellence in Environmental Education Program Award, is being recognized for so aptly upholding its mission to give Maine middle school students an opportunity to learn environmental science by doing the work of real scientists. This collaborative citizen science program connects Maine teachers and their students with scientists and citizens across the state who are collaborating to monitor and study invasive and native species in all habitats. Through the program website at www.vitalsignsme.org , students make and share original observations with scientists and the public and create and share projects that make meaning of their data.

Coleen O'Connell, Director and Founder of the Master of Science program in Ecological Teaching and Learning, Lesley University, Cambridge Massachusetts is the winner of MEEA's 2013 Eberhard Thiele Environmental Educator of the Year award.  Coleen, a resident of Belfast, Maine, is being recognized for her incredible contributions to furthering environmental education in Maine and New England for the past 27 years.  Coleen has dedicated her career to promoting the importance of environmental literacy and has served on the MEEA Board, the North American Association for Environmental Education Board, has co-founded several environmentally-related non-profit organizations, and continues to serve on a number of boards for many environmentally- focused education groups.  Her contributions to the field of environmental education are numerous and will be enduring. 

Jim Chandler, Director Auburn Land Lab and Consulting Science Teacher, Auburn School Department, Auburn, ME, is the winner of a Maine Environmental Education Association Lifetime Achievement award.  Jim has volunteered thousands of hours with MEEA serving as an active board member for the past 22 years and a two -term president of the organization.  Jim's impact on environmental education in Maine is clearly evident.  He brought the Canon Envirothon program to the state of Maine in 1989 and has served on the international committee for this high school environmental education competition.  Among many previous awards, Jim has been recognized for his outstanding contributions to environmental education as a National Project Learning Tree Outstanding Educator and a Maine Science Teacher of the Year.  Jim has created numerous environmental education programs that have touched the lives of countless students and educators for the past 30 years.  Jim serves as an inspiration for all who work in environmental education related fields in Maine.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Upcoming Project WILD workshops at Maine Audubon in Falmouth

Hello MEEA Members,
Here are some awesome looking upcoming EE workshops at Maine Audubon.  Hope you can attend!

Project WILD workshops at Maine Audubon in Falmouth
To Register: contact Linda Woodard at 207-781-2330 ex 213 or lwoodard@maineaudubon.org 
or go to http://maineaudubon.org/education/educator-workshops/
These workshops provide hands-on WILD experience with activities that address every subject and skill area, and assist participants with integration of WILD activities into their curriculums. Participants receives a Project WILD activity guide.
Growing Up Wild 
Leader: Linda Woodard 
 Where: Maine Audubon in Falmouth 
Participants will receive the Growing Up Wild and Resource Guide: Exploring Nature with Young Children Ages 3-7, correlated to the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Standards and the Head Start Domains, as well as wildlife posters, handouts and door prizes! The activity guide is an award winning publication, recognized for its contribution in the effort to connect young children to nature. 
When: Tuesday March 12
 Time: 3:30pm - 8:30 p.m. Fee: $25

When: Saturday April 6
 Time: 9a.m -1.p.m. 
 
Fee: $25

Growing Up Wild & Winter Ecology  
When: Friday March 15 
Time: 8:30am - 3:30.p.m.  Where: Maine Audubon in Falmouth Fee: $35 
The Winter Ecology session provides an opportunity to explore how plants and animals adapt to the changing seasons. Through outdoor exploration we will locate animal tracks and signs, listen for bird calls, learn about the different properties of snow and look for the awakening of spring. We will discuss Maine’s wildlife and how they adapt to winter.  Classroom activities and resource materials will be provided.
Project WILD Aquatic
When: Saturday April 13
Time: 9a.m -1.p.m. 
Where: Maine Audubon in Falmouth 
Fee: $25 
Deadline to register: Friday April 5
 

Project WILD Aquatic focuses on aquatic habitats and wildlife. Forty hands-on activities for grades K-12 take a closer look at whales, wetlands, turtles, salmon, invertebrates, marine/freshwater environments and more! Participants receive the Aquatic activity guide as well as posters, prizes and supplemental info about aquatic Maine wildlife.
Flying WILD Workshop
& Bird Banding
Leaders: Linda Woodard and Patrick Keenan of Biodiversity Research Institute.  
When:   May 10 
Time: 7 a.m. -1 p.m.
Where: Maine Audubon & the Riverpoint Sanctuary (bird banding site just minutes from Maine Audubon)
Fee: $35
 Deadline to register: Friday, May 3
 The day will start at a bird banding station just minutes from Maine Audubon in Falmouth. Participants will learn about bird banding, migration and research performed by and through Biodiversity Research Institute, along with classroom connections and activities.  Participants will receive the Flying WILD activity guide, along with a variety of Maine bird posters, handouts, and supplemental information.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Baxter State Park Interprative Speacialist Job Opening

MEEA Members-
Thought you might be interested in this new job posting from Baxter State Park.  See their website for more info as well at http://www.baxterstateparkauthority.com/employment


Baxter State Park:
Accepting applications from Feb 26 – April 1, 2013
Permanent Position
This is professional services work in developing educational and interpretive programs for Baxter State Park regarding the natural, scientific, and cultural history of Baxter State Park. Work includes collecting, evaluating, and interpreting materials to be included in the educational programs that will be useful to all age groups of park visitors and will promote awareness of natural and cultural history and outdoor ethics and public safety. The Interpretive Specialist reports directly to the Park Naturalist. Work is performed under limited supervision.


 Detailed Job Description:
 
INTERPRETIVE SPECIALIST

CODE: 0479     PAY GRADE: 18     ($13.91 – $18.57)

OPENING DATE:  February 26, 2013 CLOSING DATE:  April 1, 2013              


DESCRIPTION:   This is professional services work in developing educational and
interpretive programs for Baxter State Park regarding the natural, scientific, and cultural
history of Baxter State Park.  Work includes collecting, evaluating, and interpreting
materials to be included in the educational programs that will be useful to all age groups
of park visitors and will promote awareness of natural and cultural history and outdoor
ethics and public safety. The Interpretive Specialist reports directly to the Park
Naturalist. Work is performed under limited supervision. 
REPRESENTATIVE TASKS:   (A position may not be assigned all the duties listed, nor
do the listed examples include all the duties that may be assigned). 

  •  Develops and maintains knowledge of Maine flora and fauna and interpretive skill and techniques
  • Develops and presents interpretive programs to park staff and visitors (photos, media, props, etc.) 
  • Develops, presents and distributes information on important flora and fauna issues in order to protect Park resources, and provide public safety.
  • Maintains an archive of program plans and materials
  • Recruits, hires, supervises interns in resource monitoring and interpretation to visitors in accordance with the Park mission
  • Trains and assists employees and interns in interpretive techniques and consistent and effective messaging aligned with the Park mission.
  • Assesses the overall efficiency and effectiveness of BSP interpretive, education and information program 
  • Composes and submits written text and interpretive information for Park monitoring programs, memos, reports and publications.

ENTRY LEVEL KNOWLEDGES, SKILLS AND ABILITIES REQUIRED:   (Applicants
will be screened for possession of these through written, oral, performance, and/or
other evaluations). 
…Knowledge of Maine forests, wildlife, and natural resources.
…Knowledge of principles, practices, and techniques of natural and cultural interpretive
    program design.   
…Knowledge of graphic arts.
…Ability to develop, plan, organize, and implement interpretive programs.
…Ability to prepare, maintain, and disseminate informational material and coordinate   
    public relations activities.
…Ability to establish and maintain effective working relations.
…Ability to prepare and deliver presentations to a wide range of audiences.
…Ability to communicate effectively orally and in writing.
…Familiarity with widely accepted frameworks for outdoor ethic education.
…Ability to assist in fire control, search and rescue, activities when required.
…Ability to hike for 2-3 days in rugged backcountry terrain.
…Proficiency in MS Word Office Suite.

FULL PERFORMANCE KNOWLEDGES, SKILLS AND ABILITIES REQUIRED: 
(These may be acquired on the job and are needed to perform the work assigned).

…Ability to develop and implement an environmental education program.
…Knowledge of backcountry ethics, gear and best practices.
…Knowledge of Baxter State Park, rules, regulations and relevant federal and state 
    laws.
\
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS:  (Entry level knowledges, skills, and/or abilities may be
acquired through, BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO to the following coursework/training
and/or experience).

Three (3) years of education and experience in naturalist and interpretive work.

LICENSING/REGISTRATION/CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS:  (These must be
met by all employees prior to attaining permanent status in this class.)
None.
EXAM PLAN:  (This must be successfully completed by all employees prior to attaining
permanent status in this class.)
Direct Hire.

APPLICATION INFORMATION:

A complete State of Maine application form (revised October 2005) and Supplemental
Questionnaire, full job description may be found at (www.baxterstateparkauthority.com).   Be as
complete as possible in describing education, training, and work experience (paid and unpaid) on
your application.  Additional sheets may be used; however, information must be in the same
format as shown on the application form.  Please do not include videos, portfolios or printed
publications.

The completed application, including the required Supplemental Qualifications Form, proof of
licensing/registration/certification, copies of post-secondary transcripts, etc. may be sent to the
address below, faxed or e-mailed to:

JEAN HOWES
HUMAN RESOURCES
BAXTER STATEPARK
64 BALSAM DRIVE
MILLINOCKET, ME   04462


TELEPHONE:  (207) 723-9616          TTY: (207)-723-9905
                                FAX: (207) 723-6381                              E-MAIL:  jean.howes@maine.gov


PLEASE KEEP A COPY OF YOUR APPLICATION MATERIALS.  WE ARE UNABLE TO
PROVIDE COPIES OF SUBMITTED MATERIALS.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT THIS POSITION:



This position supports and implements the information/education, resource monitoring
and resource protection goals of Baxter State Park under the direct supervision of the
Baxter State Park Naturalist.

The Interpretive Specialist must have the skills and abilities to create and present public
programs which interpret Park natural/cultural history, policies, recreational
opportunities, and outdoor ethics, using a variety of techniques and media.  The
successful candidate will possess strong written and oral communication skills in
addition to extensive experience in resource protection through public information.

The position is responsible for administration of the Alpine Steward Program and
several citizen science and resource monitoring initiatives on Katahdin each summer,
as well as coordinating programming for children and families visiting the Park.  The
Interpretive Specialist also provides training/information resources useful to Park staff.

Responsibilities also include assisting in hiring, training, and supervision of seasonal
Wilderness Educator intern positions, providing occasional coverage at the Togue Pond
Visitor Center, assisting with information delivery at Park Headquarters, including the
automated slide show, bulletin board postings throughout the Park and
community/school outreach programs. Multi-day backpack trips in rugged backcountry
terrain are required to accomplish some aspects of this work.  Additionally, this position
will assist with data entry, administrative assignments, manipulation and archiving of I/E
photo files, and production of the annual Park newspaper, Wildnotes.  This position will
also monitor for and report on invasive species.

Baxter State Park is located in north central Maine with Park Headquarters in
Millinocket.  The Park is a 209,644 acre public land trust administered distinctly and
separately from the Maine State Park system, with management policies established by
the Baxter State Park Authority in accordance with the provisions of the Deeds of Trust
as accepted from Park donator Percival P. Baxter.  The Park has a variety of
management areas and goals, including approximately 75% of the land serving as a
wildlife sanctuary, 15% devoted to Scientific Forest Management and 25% providing
hunting opportunities.
 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Congrats to Maine Middle School Teacher on Being Named 2013 Project Learning Tree National Outstanding Educator

Hello MEEA Members-
This is an article taken from PLT's website recognizing one of our own outstanding educators as a PLT National Outstanding Educator this year!  How exciting for Cameron Sutton and for Maine!
Read on to learn more...

Five Educators Named 2013 National Project Learning Tree Outstanding Educators

March 4, 2013

Washington, D.C. – Five educators who use environmental education as a tool to improve student learning and foster environmental stewardship were named the 2013 National Outstanding Educators by Project Learning Tree® (PLT), the environmental education program of the American Forest Foundation. Since 1994, PLT’s Outstanding Educators have been selected for their commitment to environmental education, exemplary use of PLT, and exceptional teaching skills.
The 2013 National PLT Outstanding Educators and their home states are--
  • Connecticut: Lynn Kochiss, Grade 3 Teacher, Woodside Elementary School, Cromwell
  • Maine: Cameron Kay Sutton, Grades 7–8 Science Teacher, Auburn Middle School, Auburn
  • Michigan: Maureen Stine, Conservation Educator, U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service, Onaway
  • Ohio: Cheri Goggin, Grades 9–12 Physical and Environmental Science Teacher, Berkshire Junior/Senior High School, Burton
  • Virginia: Allison Hall Kiesler, a lifetime environmental educator in school and community settings in Richmond.

The 2013 National Project Learning Tree Outstanding Educators will be honored at PLT’s 27th International Coordinators’ Conference, April 29-May 2, in Point Clear, Alabama. Their diverse experiences illustrate how PLT can be used effectively on the ground with all age groups, both in the classroom or outdoors, and across the curriculum--especially in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and math.)
In nominating the 2013 PLT Outstanding Educators, their colleagues pointed to their commitment, creativity, and energy in working with students of all ages and abilities. For example, when students asked questions about recycling, Lynn Kochiss helped them create and organize an after-school environmental club that is an active part of their Connecticut community. Similarly, Cheri Goggin empowered her high school students in Ohio to write grant proposals to fund school service projects, and Cameron Sutton is known for her ability to provide students in Maine with meaningful and relevant outdoor learning experiences. Maureen Stine is known throughout northern Michigan for connecting many different educational programs and opportunities to benefit children of all ages, as was Allison Kiesler in the Richmond, VA, area who provided access to green areas and outdoor experiences in an urban setting.
“Schools must prepare our next generation with the skills necessary to address complex environmental issues,” said Kathy McGlauflin, senior vice president for education at the American Forest Foundation. “These five outstanding educators show how integrating environmental education and PLT across the curriculum engages students in learning science and all core subjects, and inspires them to make a difference in their communities.”
Background about the 2013 Outstanding Educators:
Lynn Kochiss, a third-grade teacher at Woodside Intermediate School in Cromwell, CT, founded the school’s popular Earth Club for students in grades 3 through 5. Her students have successfully led a number of community and school service projects. She organizes workshops to show other educators how to get students outside, learning about nature and environmental issues while meeting state education standards.  She also organizes family nature walks for the Connecticut Forest and Park Association, among many other efforts. She was her school’s Teacher of the Year in 2011-2012 and Connecticut Outdoor & Environmental Education Association’s Environmental Educator of the Year in 2010.
Cameron Kay Sutton, a science teacher in grades 7 and 8 at Auburn Middle School, in Auburn, ME, is known for her ability to work with a wide range of ages, and to adapt the teaching of science to meet students’ needs. She was an AmeriCorps volunteer with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection and the Auburn Land Lab, an environmental education facility that serves the entire school district, and was a co-consulting teacher at the Land Lab before moving into the classroom. Throughout her career she has created high-quality K-6 science curriculum units that support Maine education standards and are full of active, engaging outdoor learning. She has served on the boards of the Maine Environmental Education Association and the Maine PLT Steering Committee.
Maureen Stine, a conservation educator for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service in Onaway, MI, promotes quality forest management on private lands under a U.S. Farm bill program. She also volunteers for the USDA Earth Team to provide conservation education to children. She uses PLT activities and service-learning opportunities to provide meaningful experiences for students of all ages with an emphasis on trees, soils, and water quality issues. She is the Michigan Green Schools program liaison in three counties, co-chairs the Getting Kids Outdoors Northern Michigan Coalition advisory committee, and is on the Leadership Team of the Northeast Michigan Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative, among many other activities.
Cheri Goggin, a teacher of physical and environmental science to students in grades 9 to 12 at Berkshire High School in Burton, OH, is committed to finding ways for her students to take an active role in their education. She is known for her ability to make learning fun and involve her students in hands-on, meaningful experiences beyond the classroom. She helped them successfully write grants, including a PLT GreenWorks! grant, for a rain garden, outdoor learning stations, habitat for native plants and animals, and a bioswale. Through many other student-led projects, she connects students to the outdoors and encourages them to give back to the community. She was honored as the 2011 Ohio Conservation Teacher of the Year by the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts.
Allison Hall Kiesler, a former teacher and most recently children’s garden programmer at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, passed away in September 2012. Throughout her life, she shared her love of the environment with children, their families, and fellow educators. After running the nature center at Maymont Park in Richmond, she was an educational consultant and presenter, then became a science teacher at Orchard House School, a middle school for girls. She joined the staff of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden where she developed K-5 outdoor discovery programs, training and resources for teachers. Through her guidance and sharing of educational materials and strategies, she had a tremendous impact on how schools, parks, and other facilities draw on PLT and other programs to instill a love of nature in future generations.
About Project Learning TreeProject Learning Tree® (PLT) uses trees and forests as windows on the world to increase students’ understanding of the environment and actions they can take to improve it.  PLT provides educators with curriculum, professional development, and resources to integrate environmental education into lesson plans for all grades and subject areas, and to use the outdoors to engage students in learning about the world around them.  PLT teaches students how to think, not what to think about complex environmental issues, and helps the next generation learn critical-thinking and problem-solving skills they need to make informed choices about the environment. Developed in 1976, PLT’s 50-state network includes more than 500,000 trained educators using PLT materials that cover the total environment and more than 2,000 PLT GreenSchools!  PLT is a program of the American Forest Foundation. For more information, visit www.plt.org.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Press Release on EPA Environmental Literacy Subgrant Awards

Maine Organizations Awarded Grants to Improve Environmental Literacy

Rising to the top of a highly competitive process, Maine Audubon, Maine TREE Foundation, Appalachian Mountain Club (on behalf of the Maine Outdoor Coalition), and Schoodic Education and Research Center each received $5,000 grants to increase community awareness and knowledge about the environment. These programs will contribute to increasing the environmental knowledge and skills of students, teachers, and families in the state of Maine.

Made possible by a $150,000 grant from the US Environmental Protection Agency, the New England Environmental Education Alliance (www.neeea.org), in partnership with the Maine Environmental Education Association, received close to 100 proposals for educational programs that focus on learning about the environment. Nineteen projects throughout 6 New England states were funded. Acknowledging the importance of an environmentally literate citizenry, the EPA states, “environmental challenges require a population that is diverse, informed, and environmentally literate, willing and able to translate their knowledge and skills into decisions and actions that protect the environment in their communities.”

Maine Audubon (Falmouth) was selected for their project: “Principles & Practice for Effective Environmental Literacy Experiences”. A working group of educators and other stakeholders will be convened for the purpose of establishing research-based principles and practices for effective environmental literacy experiences, which will then be shared with classroom and non-formal educators throughout the state.

The Maine TREE Foundation (Augusta) plans to partner with the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife using Project WILD, the Lake Auburn Watershed Protection Commission using Project WET, and National Project Learning Tree on their project “Woods, Water and Wildlife: Collaboration to Create a Statewide Model for Sustained Environmental Education”. This project is designed to deliver professional development for ten teams of teachers interested in using the outdoors as a learning environment. Kits containing supplies for conducting student led field studies will be provided to participating schools.

In the project “Maine Outdoor Coalition: Building a Strategic Network”, the Appalachian Mountain Club (Portland) plans to assist the advancement of the Maine Outdoor Coalition from its current status as a group of loosely associated non-profits and businesses committed to supporting Mainer’s connection to the great outdoors, into a strategic network by defining leadership and common goals.

The Schoodic Education and Research Center, or SERC, (Winter Harbor) will implement “ACORN – Advancing Capacity of Regional Networks: Planting the Seed for a New England EE Research and Evaluation Institute”. This effort will build capacity for collaborative evaluation through a regional needs assessment, the results of which will be used to design and host a regional meeting of New England environmental education practitioners to share findings and best practices.

Together, the environmental education projects funded in New England will develop and test new educational techniques and approaches that address critical environmental resources and issues while advancing Maine’s core science standards and helping the public make informed decisions that affect environmental quality in Maine.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Upcoming EE event at Topsham Library hosted by CREA

Hello MEEA Members and Friends-
Just wanted to let you know of a wonderful FREE environmental education event hosted by the Cathance River Education Alliance happening at the Topsham Library on FEBRUARY 26 from 6:30-8:00 pm.  Hope to see you there!

Event:  Wind Over Wings Eagles: Character and Courage

This is a special presentation about eagles, their amazing
character, and their stories of courage after injury. Come see the
Golden Eagle and hear about the two injured Bald Eagles currently
being cared for at Wind Over Wings. Hope Douglas founded the
nonprofit organization Wind Over Wings about twenty years ago.
Wind Over Wings brings birds into classrooms, conference centers,
auditoriums, and places of worship or homes, for environmental
education programs. Birds in their care are unable to survive in
the wild. Each of them inspires us with their stories of courage,
adaptability, and resilience. Programs are conducted by trained
educators and are interactive and age-appropriate




Tuesday, February 19, 2013

MEEA 2013 Annual Conference Registration Now Open!

REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN!
Pathways to Environmental Literacy: 
Sharing Stories to Inspire our Work

March 22, 2013   8:30am-4:15pm
Chewonki Foundation     Wiscasett, Maine   
Maine Environmental Education Association2013 Annual Conference
Maine Environmental Education Association  
MEEA logo  
  
The Maine Environmental Education Association facilitates and promotes Environmental Education in Maine through the sharing of ideas, resources, information, and cooperative programs among educators, organizations, and concerned individuals.  MEEA is built on the strengths and contributions of our members.
 
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Dear Olivia,
Please join us in Wiscasset, Maine on Friday, March 22, 2013 for Maine Environmental Education Association's (MEEA) Annual Conference! Based on the discussions at last year's conference, this year's theme is focused on how our individual stories connect us and impact our collective work in promoting environmental literacy for the future. In sharing our stories, current trends in education and outdoor recreation and related research, we seek to bring together professionals from across sectors to explore our histories, build connections and find new opportunities for collaboration.    
 
See the exciting strands for this year's conference below. In the hopes of continuing to expand the scope of environmental education, we hope that you share this invitation with someone who might not normally receive MEEA notices.  We look forward to building a partnership with you in March!
 
 
Sincerely,                                      
 
MEEA Conference Planning Committee 
 
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Conference Information 
  
2013 MEEA Conference Strands:
  • Environmental Education Impact:  Research findings and trends, evaluation and assessment methods, best practices
  • Effective Collaboration:  Cross-sector partnerships, multi-organization collaborations, cross-curricular teaching, collective impact
  • Professional Tools:  Grant writing, budgeting, management, marketing and communication
  • Nature Connection:  STEM and nature education, outdoor engagement, access to land, health
Workshop descriptions and conference schedule will be posted on the MEEA website in the next couple of weeks. 
Location:  Chewonki Foundation, 485 Chewonki Neck Road, Wiscasset, Maine 04578 

Inclement Weather Date:  Saturday, March 23, 2013
Conference Fees and Registration

Please Note:  Conference Fee includes all workshops and keynote, lunch and a one year MEEA membership (annual individual membership alone is $15!)


Individual
:  $60 ($70 after March 2)
Lead Presenter: $50 ($60 after March 2) 
Student and group rates available.

Exhibit Space:  $25 for Non-Profits/$50 For-Profit
Organizational memberships also optional! 

Limited scholarships are available.  Everyone is eligible, so register early to secure funds!

Teacher Substitute Scholarships:  Again this year, MEEA is encouraging teachers to attend by providing substitute scholarships.  Teachers may request funds to help cover the costs of their substitute, as this is often prohibitive to attending an out-of-district function.  Please request these funds via the on-line conference registration form.  
 
If you have questions regarding conference registration, please contact Tamara Whitmore at tamara@watershedfriends.com or (207) 621-4100.