10 Community-Based Educational Highlights: Chrysanthemums to Candy Science. Creative-Free Play to Service-Based Learning.

Glassblowing to Mooncakes. Quakers to Ecosystems. Creative-Free Play to Nature-Based Learning. These are just a few of the community-based learning highlights we’re featuring this week. Peruse our list below and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play!

Featured seasonal highlight this week:

Veterans Day, a U.S. national holiday originally known as Armistice Day, provides communities with the opportunity to honor and learn about the service provided by former military members. Chances for community service to support and honor veterans are available right here in our own community, and families can also learn about military history on Veterans Day by engaging in living history demonstrations and activities. Read more in our post, Volunteer & Cultural Opportunities to Honor Veterans on Veterans Day in Western MA.

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Mindful Engagement through the Seasons: Autumn Icons

Learning through the Lens of Autumn Icons

Once school is back in session, the transition from summer to autumn is signaled by a steady stream of fall icons appearing across the region that mark the season. We begin to find ourselves behinds school buses in the early morning hours while dodging squirrels racing across the roads in search of acorns before the cold settles in. Pumpkin lattes and apple cider donuts appear on cafe menus. Scarecrows, mums, and gourds decorate storefronts and front porches. The leaves of deciduous trees bloom into hues of red, orange, and yellow. And apple orchards invite families to pick-their-own apples or the convenience of 1/2 pecks of locally grown fruit for homemade apple pies and cobbler. Signs of autumn not only mark the season and engage our senses, but they are also embedded with limitless community-based educational opportunities and value-based methods for community engagement. Let’s take a quick look at three different signs of autumn that are connected to the weather, local harvest, and cultural heritage of the region and how they can support learning while strengthening a sense of place. Read the rest of this entry »

10 Community-Based Educational Highlights: Peach Tea to Chicken BBQ. Zen Buddhism to Hindu Traditions.

A few annual community harvest meals to check out this weekend include the Plainfield Volunteer Fire Department and Shelburne Falls Eagles annual chicken BBQ’s this Sunday.

Fireside Poets to Local Peaches. Zen kōans to Holy Tulsi. Monarch Butterflies to Beavers. These are just a few of the community-based learning highlights we’re featuring this week!

Peruse our list below and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play!

Featured learning highlight this week:

COMMUNITY MEALS
Intergenerational opportunities to gather around the table for a community meal with friends and neighbors are available at nearly every agricultural fair. From blueberry pancake breakfast to BBQ chicken dinner, there’s something for everyone! Visit fair websites to see what’s being served this year and make plans to sit with your neighbors and start up conversations. Let your children learn about local history through stories your elderly neighbors might share, make new friends, and walk away with new community connections. Read more about community harvest meals and festivals in our Late Summer/Early Autumn Season issue of Learning Ahead.

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11 Community-Based Educational Highlights: Singularity to Anthropocene. Puppets to Drums…

Owls are featured heavily in mythology and folklore from around the world. Ancient peoples had many, often contradictory, views on these mysterious creatures.

Literature in translation to Rube Goldberg Machines. Singularity to Anthropocene. Puppets to drums. These are just a few of the community-based learning highlights we’re featuring this week!

Peruse our list below and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play!

Featured community highlight this week:

THE WORLD OF OWLS
In ancient Greece, the owl was sacred to the goddess of wisdom Athene, who favored the bird after it chased away the mischievous crow. Among the ancient Celtic people of the British Isles, the owl was known as “cailleach,” or “old woman.” Associated with the Crone figure from the Celtic Triple Goddess, the owl was seen as a psychopomp, or guide to the land of the dead. In “The World of Owls,” on Monday, July 9, 6:30-7:30pm, learn all about the natural and cultural history of the owl, including some of the ways that this bird has been misunderstood. This presentation is appropriate for children ages 6 and above. Westhampton Public Library. 1 North Road, Westhampton, MA (FREE)

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Homesteading & STEM for All Ages in the Hilltowns

S.T.E.M. and Homesteading for All Ages
2016 H.A.Y. Conference

There are many reasons to want to get involved in the homesteading movement, a trend towards self-reliance in daily living. It can be empowering to learn how to produce your own food, clothing, or other products you use on a daily basis. You might be motivated because you want to know where these things come from while wanting to cut down on your environmental impact. Plus, growing your own food, making or swapping clothing, building your own furniture, can be fun! And there’s so much learning that can happen in the process, expanding your knowledge and skills.

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