Three FREE Summer 2021 Professional Development Options

Register Now!

Summer 3-Day Workshop

An advanced version of our popular Team Teaching with Mother Nature workshop:
  • Multi-disciplinary, hands-on activities to engage & inspire students
  • Strategies for successful outdoor instruction
  • A focus on academic standards
  • An emphasis on STEM
  • Opportunities to share ideas with other educators!

Ecology Institute

Ecology investigations will include:
  • Surveying of Minnesota forests
  • Investigating food webs & analyzing trophic levels in a grassland community
  • Conducting population density studies
  • Tracking succession in both terrestrial & aquatic habitats

Patterns in Nature Institute

Participants will gain an understanding of plants & animals as they study:
  • Forest & tree structure
  • Animal signs & tracks
  • Bird body structure & adaptations
  • Insect & flower interactions
  • Phenology

Jeffers offers several different workshops

All of our workshops are tailored to the specific school or venue,
All workshop participants receive great ideas and useful tools,

&

All of our workshops are FREE of charge

outside calendar workshop

Resources: Participating teachers receive a Jeffers Journal, Teacher LooKit, current Freshwater Minnesota Weatherguide Environment™ Calendar to use during the workshop. Classroom teachers also receive a class set of journals for their students upon completion of the workshop. School will also receive a set of 30 student LooKits.

Optional resources include: set of EcoTime cards, Nature Detective bandanna, and a Good Sense booklet

Cost: No charge, however, a deposit is required

Length: 4 hours

Team Teaching with Mother Nature workshop objectives:
  • Increase observational skills – Using all your senses
  • Learn skills, strategies & tools for successful outdoor learning
  • Use multidisciplinary journaling activities that encourage “focus” for outdoor learning
  • Recognize your schoolyard (and school garden) as a learning resource
  • Identify lessons in your classroom curriculum that are easily taught outdoors
  • Identify state academic standards that can be attained by outdoor instruction
  • Feel confident about outdoor instruction as a way to spark a student’s sense of wonder while increasing academic knowledge and achievement
  • Incorporate phenology in daily lessons or morning meetings
  • Have fun learning outdoors!
*In-Service workshop: Host a workshop for your entire teaching staff or host a regional workshop at your school. In-Service workshop are available for all grade levels, elementary, middle school, or high school.
*Pre-Service workshops are available for Methods/Pedagogy courses for elementary licensure and 5-12/9-12 licensure.

Why Outdoors? Why Not?

Why Outdoors? Why Not?
This workshop is designed to introduce the concept of teaching outdoors for an entire teaching staff. It can serve as a stand-alone workshop or precede a more in-depth follow-up workshop (Team Teaching with Mother Nature) that expands the scope of outdoor teaching and learning.
Workshop objectives:
  • Build teacher enthusiasm for outdoor learning
  • Help teachers recognize their schoolyard as a learning resource
  • Participate in sensory-rich observation activities aimed to enhance student learning outdoors
  • Introduce teaching staff to Jeffers resources

Resources:  Participating teachers receive a Jeffers Journal, a teacher LooKit, and a current Freshwater Minnesota Weatherguide Environment™ Calendar

Cost: No charge, however, a deposit is required

Length: 2 hours

Early Childhood

Resources: Participating teachers receive a set of GO Cards and a copy of A Parents’ Guide to Nature Play

Cost: No charge, however, a deposit is required

Length: 4 hours

Early Childhood (Pre-K) workshop objectives:
  • Increase observational skills using all your senses
  • Learn skills, strategies, & tools for successful outdoor learning
  • Recognize your school ground as a teaching resource
  • Identify activities that can be taught outdoors
  • Identify Early Childhood Indicators of Progress that can be observed outdoors
  • Gain confidence about outdoor learning as a way to spark a child’s sense of wonder
  • Incorporate phenology into classroom activities
  • Have fun learning outdoors!

 

Click here to go to our Early Childhood page

Calendar in the Classroom

Calendar in the Classroom

The Calendar in the Classroom (CIC) workshop introduces elementary teachers to the Freshwater Minnesota Weatherguide Environment™ Calendar and grade-level lessons designed by Minnesota teachers. The CIC lessons fit within five themes: Astronomy, Gardening, Phenology, Water, and Weather. Participants will experience CIC lessons while incorporating data and resources found within the calendar.

The Calendar in the Classroom lessons promote daily use of the Freshwater Calendar, including:
Daily weather data
  • Sunrise/sunset
  • Normal temps
  • Record temps
  • Cloud types
  • Beaufort Scale (wind speed)
  • Wind Chill/Heat Index Charts
Weekly Phenology Notes
Monthly Astronomy Phenomena
  • Morning Sky
  • Evening Sky
  • Astronomical Highlights
Featured Species of the month
Fabulous Nature Photography (from all around our beautiful state)
Click here to go to our Calendar in the Classroom page

Resources: Participating teachers receive a Jeffers Journal  and a Freshwater Minnesota Weatherguide Environment™ Calendar

Cost: No charge, however, a deposit is required

Length: 2 hours

Content Institutes

Resources: Depends upon the Institute

Cost: No charge, however, a deposit is required

Length:  Varies, 2-3 Days depends upon the content

Content Institutes
Our outdoor classroom methods used along with investigations focused on pattern, structure/function, and more while working with ecological systems, birds, insects, etc. will help teachers provide meaningful science lessons for students that will address standards as well as connect science to other disciplines with the use of journaling.
Content Institutes Include:
  • Birding Institute (Spring)
  • Ecology Institute (Summer)
  • Patterns in Nature Institute (Summer)
  • Insect Institute (Fall)
  • Environmental Engineering Institute (Winter)
Click here to go to our Content Institutes page
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