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Location: Montpelier

Training Type: In Person

Total Hours: 40

Cost: $ 1300

Scholarship: Yes

Contact Information:

Emily Sloan

ECO Institute for Early Childhood Educators Sylvia Kennedy-Godin

Special Topics:
Sponsor: North Branch Nature Center
Instructor: Mary Zentara and Amy Butler

The ECO Institute for Early Childhood Educators is a week-long course for teachers, assistants, directors, and home visitors. The Institute is inquiry-based, outdoor learning through intensive experiential lessons, activities, and discussions. Participants will move beyond the classroom and engage with nature as a learning partner. Participants will develop a nature pedagogy and learn to incorporate VELS into their design of nature immersion curricula. This course introduces participants to the core routines that structure a successful outdoor learning and play experience. Participants will: Learn outdoor classroom management skills, how to conduct risk benefit assessments, and manage hazards within an outdoor classroom space. Explore foundational math and literacy skill development in nature with nature. Learn how to partner with the natural world to bring the curriculum outdoors and nature indoors while meeting Vermont Early Learning Standards. Develop a knowledge base and skill set to incorporate nature immersion into your program in a way that meets the needs of your students.

Core Knowledge Area
  • Safety & Wellness
  • Developmentally Appropriate & Inclusive Practices
  • Curriculum & Learning Environments
  • Preschool/PreK
Session Dates
Session Times
July 15, 2019
8:00 am - 3:00 pm
July 16, 2019
8:00 am - 3:00 pm
July 17, 2019
8:00 am - 3:00 pm
July 18, 2019
8:00 am - 3:00 pm
July 19, 2019
8:00 am - 3:00 pm
Additional Information

Participants will spend the entire week learning outdoors except in the case of extreme weather. Please dress for outdoor learning. Bring lunch and snacks, rain gear, sunscreen, bug spray, and a comfortable outdoor chair that you can carry. Students may earn 3 graduate credits through Castleton University.