Place-Based Learning at Teaching the Hudson Valley’s Summer Institute | Daily Dose

Monday, July 17, 2017

Place-Based Learning at Teaching the Hudson Valley’s Summer Institute

Posted By on Mon, Jul 17, 2017 at 9:00 AM

click to enlarge Tashae Smith on her African American History Tour of Newburgh. She will present a workshop, Out of Washington’s Shadow: Creating an African-American History Tour of Newburgh, with Colin Morris, professor of history, Manhattanville College at this year's Teaching the Hudson Valley summer institute.
  • Tashae Smith on her African American History Tour of Newburgh. She will present a workshop, Out of Washington’s Shadow: Creating an African-American History Tour of Newburgh, with Colin Morris, professor of history, Manhattanville College at this year's Teaching the Hudson Valley summer institute.

About a month before he won the 1932 presidential election, Dutchess County’s own Franklin D. Roosevelt declared, “Knowledge – that is, education in its true sense – is our best protection against unreasoning prejudice and panic-making fear, whether engendered by special interests, illiberal minorities or panic-stricken leaders.” He was expressing the philosophy that education is about preparing citizens for public engagement–one that’s been challenged in recent years by a competing philosophy that education is about preparing workers for a competitive marketplace. But it’s FDR’s thinking about education, and a current movement to return to civil discourse, that has inspired the teachers and educators who planned this year’s Teaching the Hudson Valley institute. Building Community with Place-Based Learning will be held July 25- 27 at the Henry Wallace Education and Visitor Center on the grounds of the Franklin Roosevelt Home and Presidential Library in Hyde Park and sites throughout the Valley.

In 1996, Congress designated the Hudson River Valley a National Heritage Area in order to recognize, preserve, protect, and interpret its nationally significant cultural, historic, and natural resources. Launched in 2003, Teaching the Hudson Valley is one of the programs designed to help carry out the purpose of the Heritage Area. THV helps educators discover, appreciate, and share the region’s treasures with children and youth, and fosters collaboration between schools, museums, parks, historic sites, art galleries, libraries, and other groups through free K-12 lesson plans, grant programs to aid with place-based learning oporunities, and the annual summer institute, which offers rare opportunities for school and informal educators to meet and exchange ideas.

Place-based learning aspires to ground curriculum in the attributes of the Hudson Valley, using local, regional, and community places, resources, systems, and themes as a context for learning. It prioritizes hands-on learning and builds relationships between schools and significant places, not-for-profits, businesses, and/or government agencies in the Hudson Valley. Grounded in real-world experience, students learn how their communities and local stories figure into national and international history, culture, and politics, and schools become less isolated as they realize local opportunities.

This year’s Teaching the Hudson Valley summer institute features two days of more than fifteen workshops and one day of field experience. Choose three workshops per day from offerings such as Strategies for Exploring Your Amazing Hometown, How water resources connect us, An African-American History Tour of Newburgh, Planning and Paying for Student Field Experiences, and Teaching Tough Topics using immigration as a model. Choose one field experience to explore in either Kingston, Newburgh, the Lower Hudson Valley, or Bear Mountain. Go for one day or for all three. The program is designed with educators in mind, but anyone with an interest is encouraged to attend.

Teaching the Hudson Valley’s annual summer institute, Building Community with Place-Based Learning: Tuesday, July 25, 9a-4p or 4:30p (depending on last workshop choice), and Thursday, July 27, 9a-4:15p, choose up to three workshop sessions to be held at the FDR Home and Library in Hyde Park. See the full schedule. Wednesday, July 26, choose one of four field experiences: 9a-5p Building Community in Kingston: History, Art & Environment in City Neighborhoods; 9:15a-3:30p Great Newburgh History Adventure: A How-To Field Experience; 10a-4p Hidden Treasures of Science & History in the Lower Hudson Valley; 9:30-3:30p Historic Bridges of the Hudson Valley: Building Bridges to Build Community. See field experience descriptions and logistical info. Fees, including some meals, are $125 for all three days, $85 for two days, and $45 for a single day. Register here.
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