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College professors work to increase place-based environmental education in Wisconsin

Teacher educators from across Wisconsin gathered together in June to explore place-based environmental education. During this four-day workshop, David Sobel, from Antioch University and author of Place-Based Education, helped professors understand how to use place-based environmental education in teacher preparation. Additional sessions included an overview of environmental education in Wisconsin’s teacher education programs and work time to collaborate and develop plans for implementation, one of the most cited needs to make change in higher education.

The workshop was funded through a planning grant from the National Science Foundation. Forty-two teacher educators attended, representing 19 of the 33 teacher education programs in the state.

As part of the workshop, participants wrote and submitted activities that they will implement over the course of the next year. The group will meet again in January to share successes and challenges in the integration of environmental education.

These efforts stemmed from previous work with the Teacher Educator Network for Environmental Education, a grassroots group that aims to advocate for quality environmental education, serve as a communication hub for teacher educators, and act as an umbrella for research of EE in teacher education.