Juneau Nature Seminars: Community and Teacher Classes

Weekend and evening classes open to the community and providing free professional development for teachers.  Instructors Richard Carstensen and Steve Merli address natural and cultural history with a focusing question  ‘why do we live here?’

Most seminars involve a weekend (both days) outdoors plus two weekday evening classroom sessions.  You may enroll in as many of the three seminars as you wish.

The three 2019 Seminars are:

  • March 2-3, 5-6:  History & geography of Áak’w & T’aakú Aaní (land of Auk & Taku people).
  • May 30-June 2:  Landforms (geology) of Áak’w & T’aakú Aaní: Year-2: Kaxdigoowu Héen (Montana Creek) & Eeyák’w (Amalga Harbor)
  • June 6-9: Habitats of Áak’w & T’aakú Aaní: Year-2: Kaxdigoowu Héen (Montana Creek) & Eeyák’w (Amalga Harbor)

We recommend a $75 donation for members of the general public, and ask no fee of teachers or professional educators.  *Teachers seeking Ed 581 credit:  Each seminar provides 1 credit. To receive professional development education credit, you’ll register for the course with UAA, and will complete the seminar plus independent study and a final project. Upon successful completion, you may submit your UAA receipt to us for reimbursement!

If a course is full or “out of stock” please join our waitlist here.  We expect to take participants off the waitlist. 

Please see the full Description below for all the details!

 

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Description

History & geography of Áak’w & T’aakú Aaní (land of Auk & Taku people)    March 2/3: 10am – 4pm, March 5/6: 6pm – 8pm

This field-based, place-based class helps educators explore the unique geological and ecological features of Aanchgaltsoow (Auke Rec), blending natural and cultural history. How, for example, does a study of glacial history illuminate the stories of clan migrations? How were village sites chosen in an archipelago of changing sea levels and radical climate change? And what does “resilience” mean ecologically? Why do we live here, and how can we pass along a viable future for tomorrow’s Southeast Alaskans?  Time will be set aside during each field day for solo journaling, followed by sharing of thoughts on how these concepts/experiences can be introduced to students within a trauma-informed context.

 

Landforms (geology) of Áak’w & T’aakú Aaní: Year-2: Kaxdigoowu Héen (Montana Creek) & Eeyák’w (Amalga Harbor) May 30/31: 6pm – 8pm, June 1/2: 10am – 4pm

This field-based, place-based class helps educators explore the unique ecological features of Montana Creek and Amalga Harbor (Auke Rec), blending geologic and cultural history. This course will focus on coastal and terrestrial habitats, with special emphasis on human inhabitation and foraging needs. Time will be set aside during each field day for solo journaling, followed by sharing of thoughts on how these concepts/experiences can be introduced to students.

 

Habitats of Áak’w & T’aakú Aaní: Year-2: Kaxdigoowu Héen (Montana Creek) & Eeyák’w (Amalga Harbor) June 6/7: 6pm – 8pm, June 9/10: 10am – 4pm

This field-based, place-based class helps educators explore the unique ecological features of  Amalga Harbor, blending natural and cultural history. This course will focus on coastal and terrestrial habitats, with special emphasis on human inhabitation and foraging needs. Time will be set aside during each field day for solo journaling, followed by sharing of thoughts on how these concepts/experiences can be introduced to students.

 

Juneau Nature Seminars is comprised of complementary 1-credit classes blending natural and cultural history, offered to Juneau educators and open to the public at large too.  The classes are highly place-based, so a teacher can take, for example, the class called Landforms in successive years without concern that material will be overly redundant.  Note: The Landforms (geology) and Habitats classes are part of a multi-year series in which we investigate Juneau’s special places. In week-1 we focus on geology/landforms, and in week-2, return to those same places, ‘layering on’ the biology: habitats, succession, culture, etc.  Because we feature different places each year, teachers can take them in successive years without fear of redundancy. Taking both the landform and habitat classes (totaling 2  Ed-581 credits) makes a great complementary pair but is not required.

Instructors Richard Carstensen and Steve Merli have been teaching together since the late 1980s. As a general tendency, Carstensen structures the left-brainy, conceptual-technological course material, and Merli keeps us grounded, from his dual background as naturalist and healer. Steve will lead sessions on nature as therapy for youth-at-risk (and for us all). Although highly hands-on and experiential (ie, bushwacking!), our course also introduces cutting edge technologies such as LiDAR-based cartography, high-resolution GPS, and UAV (unoccupied aerial vehicle) videography.

Participants and may include the general public as well as teachers.  

After registering you’ll receive a link to our online Participant Agreement, which needs to be completed before the program starts. We recommend you take a moment now to look over a copy, so you’re comfortable with it before registering. Registration is voluntary, so if you don’t agree with the terms there, please don’t register, and instead let us know at info@discoverysoutheast.org.