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Doctoral students from Teachers College, Columbia University recently produced a documentary featuring the sustainability education programs of Manhattan Country School in New York City, NY and Snipes Farm & Education Center in Morrisville, PA. WATCH VIDEO
The 5-6s’ Farmers’ Market Curriculum
The 5-6s utilize the concept of the farmers’ market as a basis from which to study a variety of topics, including food, nutrition, Spanish, and earth stewardship.
7-8s’ Urban Outdoor Spaces
The 7-8s uses urban outdoor spaces as primary spaces for their studies of ecosystems, plants and trees, human habitats, community, and Northeastern Woodlands mammals. On any school day, the 7-8s may be out learning and playing in Central Park’s East Meadow or The North Woods, in a neighborhood community garden, on the rooftop garden, or tending to street trees on 96th Street.
5th Grade India Photo Exchange
Each year the 5th graders kick off their sustainability study by exchanging photographs of water, energy, food, and plastic with students at the Hope Foundation School in India. Students share their culture and experiences through images rather than words.
5th Floor Activism Project
The Activism Project is an annual and year-long initiative that is based around student inquiry and leadership on issues of crucial impact in the local and global communities. The MCS seventh and eighth graders, define activism as “when a person or group of people work directly to change a cause or political situation, based on their beliefs, through education and a long-term commitment.” Each year, these MCS students redefine activism, identify an issue of immediate importance and design a project to address that concern. Past projects have included lobbying about civil rights in Washington, D.C. and Albany, volunteering with community-based NYC nonprofits, assisting elementary schools in the Mississippi Gulf Coast region post Hurricane Katrina, establishing a collaboration with Camp Sunshine in Maine, and addressing issues about Mountain-top removal in West Virginia.
Renewable Energy Curriculum at the Farm
The Farm’s curriculum has kept pace with its environmental practices, focusing on ecological production of food, fuel and fiber while debating local environmental issues such as drinking water reservoirs, pumped-storage projects, wind energy, and mountaintop developments.
From Fleece to Cloth: MCS’ Textiles Curriculum
Lynn Haroldson, Textiles Teacher, chronicles the curriculum from the 7-8s, when students weave their first piece of fabric on a four harness loom, to the 7th and 8th grades, when students embark on a two-year graduation requirement to create a useful object.
Professional Development: CELF’s Summer Institute
The Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation (“CELF”) is a not-for-profit organization based in Chappaqua, NY that collaborates with public school districts and individual teachers to raise awareness of sustainable development and to help incorporate related principles into K-12 curricula and programs.