At BEAN WE ARE CONNECTING TO THE EARTH WITH CREATIVE WRITING AND SCIENCE
WE LOVE KISS THE GROUND LEARNING RESOURCES! We believe that connecting to nature with the guidance of a creative nature mentor, who skillfully facilitates nature awareness, ancestral skills and crafts, while out in nature’s classroom, allows children to develop a strong sense of self and a natural love of science. In this design children are naturally accessing their whole imaginations, incorporating their whole focus, all the while growing into amazing earth stewards.
From Kiss The Ground: SOIL QUEST
You might not think much about the soil under your feet. It’s just dirt, right? Actually, soil is an essential foundation for all life on earth! Soil affects the food we eat, the nutrients our natural ecosystems need, the air we breathe, and the climate that makes our planet habitable. Crazy connections, right?
Here’s the problem: Earth’s healthy soil is rapidly disappearing. This is impacting our food supply, ecosystems, and air. It is also speeding up changes to our climate.
And here’s the good news! We can all work together to restore soil’s health, and in doing so, help slow changes to our climate. As a Soil Hero, you become a part of the solution.
Outdoor classes are safer. How can teachers make it happen?
By Jen Rose Smith, CNN
Updated 9:26 AM ET, Tue August 18, 2020
A teacher at the Bay Area's Golestan School in El Cerrito, California, conducts an open-air class.
(CNN)When students return to Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, this month, they'll find a campus transformed by Covid-19. Masks are required outside of dorm rooms; fall sports are delayed.
Many courses will be a hybrid of virtual offerings and in-classroom time. But one professor will be holding class outdoors as long as possible.
"I will be teaching my environmental studies class outside whenever the weather is non-lethal," said David O'Hara, a professor who is also the university's director of sustainability.
Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, built an outdoor classroom two years ago.
This isn't just pandemic thinking on his part. Two years ago, O'Hara worked with students to build the campus' first outdoor classroom from locally sourced slate, granite and quartzite.He relishes the chance to use it. "I teach outdoors as often as I can," he said, pointing to a long tradition of outside learning that includes open-air lectures by Aristotle and other ancient philosophers.
"You remember when you were a student, sitting in a classroom and staring out the window?" O'Hara asked. "I just figured, Let's go to the other side of the window."
Now, as educators return to work amid the pandemic, that decision seems prescient.
That's because scientists believe that transmission of Covid-19 is far less likely outdoors than indoors. Maintaining physical distance can be easier outside, and infected droplets dispel more quickly in fresh air. The sun and wind, studies have suggested, may help reduce the presence of viable viruses on surfaces.
...Chief Jake Swamp was a founder of the Tree of Peace Society, an international organization promoting peace and conservation. Chief Swamp delivered the Thanksgiving Address throughout the world, as well as at the United Nations. He was born on the Akwesasne Mohawk Reservation in upstate New York, and lived in Hogansburg, NY where he worked as a cultural adviser for the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne's Child and Family Services. Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message was his first picture book. He passed away in October 2010.
BEan IN NATURE IS happy to announce that BEan IN NATURE has a new online outdoor nature educatioin learning resource! BEan has during the time of the shelter in place, after a 2 weeks at the announcement of the close of schools, programs, camps, an non essential workers working, in March, has worked tirelessly, rapid fire turn on a dime, flying close to the sun, WITH a herculean effort, on the part of Amazing BEan staff, has made the switch from being an outdoor school to an online one!
WELCOME BEan REgenerative Earth & Science Virtual Learning Program!
Many of you are at home with younglings, tweens, teens and trying to find things to keep them busy, while still learning something.
BEan online is here for you! We have quite a few interactive kids programs up, and more will be added every day.
There will also be adult offerings starting soon as well!
Email Marisa Bean
READ what Jennie, mom of 3 amazing young naturalists, scientists, artists and amazing little humans, that we have the honor to have in our program, shared:
I am the parent of three kids, ages 6, 9, and 12. My 12 year old has been part of BEan in Nature classes and camps for five years, and my younger children are following in his path. As I have fallen in love with the design, philosophy, and spirit of the program, I have been humbled to accept the invitation to join the staff as a teacher for a few homeschool classes and administrative work. When we began homeschooling, I debated putting my son into a nature class, since my husband and I are always ready to initiate a hike, join a camping trip, or take a few days to backpack in the wilderness, we wondered if our outdoor inclinations were *enough* for our kids. However, we also knew that our kids would benefit from others' perspective and love of nature, and that we have much to learn about the natural world, so we decided to give BEan in Nature a try. We were so inspired to see our son come alive with facts about nature, enhanced awareness for the environment, and a new comfort to enjoy learning in an outdoor environment. We even appreciated him addressing some of our habits that were not eco-friendly! We realized we would be remiss not to enroll him in another semester ... and another semester became a year ... became another year ... became camps ... became another of our kids joining BEan in Nature ... then another ... then personally teaching for the program.
As a family we are protective of our time and trying to play the schedule-simplifying game, but BEan in Nature is always on our non-negotiable list -- we can not let these classes go!
While we are now in this unusual time of shelter-in-place, BEan in Nature has provided my children and myself with a tremendous amount of resources to shift our energy to anchor ourselves in getting outdoors, EVEN if in our own backyards, connecting, playing, engaging. Learning, playing and enjoying nature with each other online!!! We are doing it! It works!!! The teachers are phenomenally talented and knowledgeable! We are so grateful!
I believe BEan in Nature has opened our childrens' eyes to nature in a way they will carry their whole lives. Although she is reluctant to receive the credit, the director of the program (Marisa Bean), has a philosophy of creating opportunities for kids to fall in love with nature. I believe it is this philosophy that keeps our family coming back for more; yes, the concerns for our Earth's health are overwhelming, but we know our young children can only shoulder so much. We agree with the program philosophy of letting kids love nature, and trusting they will be inspired to grow as individuals who have a passion for the environment (while providing them with bite-size eco-awareness along the way)! The other day we were hiking in the lovely Bear Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve, and encountered a banana slug. While this creature could have been a quick glance and move on moment, it became a huge conversation with me and my kids. They started sharing many funny and interesting stories from their BEan in Nature camps and classes, and I felt so thankful for all they have learned.
Sometimes it takes a banana slug to center me and help me appreciate the opportunities my children have! I am so thankful that we have found a program that makes the world feel so open to my kids, all the while making me feel assured as a parent that they have strong and safe boundaries as they adventure.
As a mom who is always on the go, I struggle to slow down, but I am so thankful that BEan in Nature has helped my kids enjoy the banana slugs in life, and a benefit of being a parent in the program, I have learned to more readily put down my phone and enjoy the slugs myself.