4/23/2020 0 Comments
TED-Ed, UNEP, and 30 other collaborators launch a free educational platform for environmental adventures available to teachers, parents, students, and curious global citizens
Nairobi, 22 April 2020 - In response to the COVID-19 crisis, an unprecedented coalition has come together to launch “Earth School,” which provides free, high-quality educational content to help students, parents and teachers around the world who are currently at home. Initiated by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and TED-Ed, Earth School takes students on a 30-day “Adventure” through the natural world.
The curated Earth School content features videos, reading materials and activities — which will be translated into 10 languages — to help students gain an understanding of the environment while considering their role within it. This is the biggest online learning initiative in UNEP’s history and is available for free on TED-Ed’s website.
According to the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), more than 1.5 billion learners are affected by COVID-19 school closures. The pandemic has caused a health, economic, and education crisis; in the age of physical and social constraints, there is a strong need for global science literacy.
That is why UNEP and TED-Ed — in coordination with 30 collaborators, including National Geographic, WWF and UNESCO — came together to launch Earth School in just over two weeks. Built for children and youth ages 5-18, it spans 30 school days that run between Earth Day and World Environment Day on June 5, which this year will take place under the banner of Time for Nature.
TED-Ed creates free, video-based lessons on everything from animals and climate change to underwater farms. It is the educational arm of TED, whose library of thousands of interactive lessons — built by a network of 500,000 educators from across the world — spans all ages and subjects.
Each Adventure has been carefully selected by a panel of expert practitioners and caters to different age groups. Each consists of a hands-on experiment and nature discovery. In addition to TED-Ed’s own content, Earth School will feature videos from notable media organizations including National Geographic, PBS LearningMedia and the BBC with the goal of empowering participating students to be caretakers of our planet.
“Billions of children are currently out of school because of COVID-19. But learning cannot stop. COVID-19 has revealed how deeply interconnected all life on this planet is," said UNEP’s Executive Director, Inger Andersen. "I am delighted that UNEP, along with TED-Ed and other collaborators, are launching Earth School. Learning about the natural world will be critical to building a better and sustainable future for all."
“These unprecedented times highlight just how important it is for young people to connect with the natural world and understand science,” said Vicki Phillips, executive vice president and chief education officer at the National Geographic Society. “We’re thrilled to join forces with trusted organizations like UNEP and TED-Ed to cultivate a spirit of exploration and build empathy for the Earth, no matter where students are the world — even if it's from inside their homes, from a window, or on a short walk in the neighborhood.”
“Despite being confined to their homes, this project shows that students, parents and teachers throughout the world can still engage in science-based learning and adventures together. Earth School is a collaboration between so many talented educators and incredible partners from around the world, which is why we’re proud and thrilled to see the initiative feeding the global curiosity of home-bound students, all of whom are the future environmental stewards of our planet. This platform is a gateway to some of the most inspiring lessons on nature and the environment, and each lesson comes with practical and fun activities that students can engage with and share,” said Logan Smalley, founding director of TED’s youth and education initiative, TED-Ed.
The lessons were curated by a team of environmental education experts including Kathleen Usher Ph.D, Jessie Oliver and Juliane Voss, who worked with over 100 contributors in creating Earth School. The initiative is in support of SDG 4.7 and the Decade of Delivery and will contribute towards the Global Education Coalition launched by UNESCO last month to convene governments, technology partners and leaders in the education field to keep pupils learning. As part of this coalition, UNEP will be exploring how this content can be adapted and shared with children who aren’t able to access the Internet.
Collaborators who have agreed to support this initiative include: BBC Ideas, Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions, Bill Nye the Science Guy, Conservation International, CEE, Earth Day Network, Earth Challenge 2020, Environment Online (ENO), GeSI, International Olympic Committee, IUCN, Institute for Planetary Security, Junior Achievement, Learning in Nature, Littlescribe, Minecraft, National Geographic Society, Ocean Wise, Only One, Royal Geographic Society, SciStarter, Sitra, TAT, TED-Ed, The Nature Conservancy, UN Convention on Biodiversity, UN SDSN / TRENDS, UN Technology Innovation Lab, UNCCD, UNDP, UNEP, UNESCO, UNFCCC, UN Food and Agriculture Organization, University of Pennsylvania, Vult Labs, World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM), Wild Immersion and WWF.
Notes for Teachers
About the UN Environment Programme
UNEP is the leading global voice on the environment. It provides leadership and encourages partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations.
TED-Ed is TED’s youth and education initiative. TED-Ed’s mission is to spark and celebrate the ideas of teachers and students around the world. Everything we do supports learning — from producing a growing library of original animated videos , to providing an international platform for teachers to create their own interactive lessons, to helping curious students around the globe bring TED to their schools and gain presentation literacy skills, to celebrating innovative leadership within TED-Ed’s global network of over 500,000 teachers. TED-Ed has grown from an idea worth spreading into an award-winning education platform that serves millions of teachers and students around the
world every week.
Due to safety concerns associated with the risk of COVID-19 contagion at public meetings, the LMNA Board of Directors at an impromptu meeting held on March 17th, voted unanimously to postpone our Rendezvous 2020 meeting to April 9th-11th 2021.
As near as possible the event will simply roll-over to next year. Members who have already paid for their rooms can maintain their reservations if they wish, or if they wish a refund, they may email Janie to arrange that. Be advised that those of us who have reserved rooms and apply for a refund may not necessarily be able to get the same rooms next year.
In case of a price increase, any price difference can be made up on the door next year.
We are sorry for any disappointment that this announcement may cause among our membership and wish you all a safe period of social distancing until the threat passes.
Please follow the recommendations of Louisiana Governor vis a vis mitigating the risk of contracting and communicating the virus.
Best wishes to you all and we look forward to seeing you all again soon.
Plant lovers among us in Louisiana may be interested in this. Thank you, Dr. Allen for this info about Crosby Arboretum’s SPRING PROGRAM SCHEDULE. Their Round Robin says:
"We are offering four pages jam-packed with programs and events this season! Come pay us a visit soon and see what’s in bloom (currently the pink honeysuckle azaleas).
Please join us this weekend for a nature sketching program and gallery opening by Robin Veerkamp:
INTRODUCTION TO NATURE SKETCHING
Saturday, March 7, 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.
Learn the basics of nature sketching and how to get started in a fun and rewarding pastime in this introductory class with artist Robin Veerkamp. Members free, non-members $5. Call 601-799-2311. Gallery opening follows.
SPRING GALLERY EXHIBIT OPENING: DRAWINGS BY ROBIN VEERKAMP
Saturday, March 7, 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. On Display June 8 - August 31
Picayune fine artist Robin Veerkamp works in colored pencils and chalk pastels, and specializes in drawing architecture, plants, animals and landscapes from original photography. Much of her work has been inspired by the beauty of the Crosby Arboretum, where she worked for over a decade. Robin teaches nature sketching throughout the year at the Arboretum. The opening event is free to all. Light refreshments will be served.
Patricia R. Drackett
Director, The Crosby Arboretum, Mississippi State University
Assistant Extension Professor of Landscape Architecture
The Crosby Arboretum/MSU Extension Service
P.O. Box 1639, 370 Ridge Road, Picayune, MS 39466
Ph. (601) 799-2311 Ext. 102 Fax (601) 799-2372"
"Extending Knowledge. Changing lives."
3/2/2020 0 Comments
We recently learned that prison inmates in the US spend more time outdoors than most school kids! Nature Deficit Disorder can be avoided with a little planning. Here is a shareable PDF of my wife, Kimmie Paxton's research project for certification in our Louisiana Master Naturalist Northeast group. The pamphlet was based upon her tri-fold display that is currently in service at the Black Bayou Lake Visitors' Center to show people how they can benefit from getting out into the fresh air and how being out in the wild can help us feel better whether we are going to the park, deeper woods or to the beach.
Different environments have different qualities. I was most surprised to learn about the forest phytoncides that can help boost our immune response. I'd seen people jogging determinedly aound West Monroe's Restoration Park, but had no idea that they (and I) were being sprinkled by a confetti of beneficial phyto-pharmaceuticals in the process!
Apparently it's best to spend a couple of days 'forest bathing' to get a good dose! Spring camping, here we come!
11/21/2019 Tracey Allen is in the process of organizing a great selection of speakers for our 2020 Rendezvous which will be at Camp Hardtner near Pollock, Louisiana.
The information posted on our Rendezvous Page will be updated on an ongoing basis, so feel free to check in to see the latest information about our retreat.