Saturday, April 14, 2018

Creative Change Educational Solutions' Curriculum Development Master Class: Reframing for Social Justice and Sustainability

Sharing this opportunity, presented by a respected colleague, coming up in June:

Upcoming Curriculum Development Master Class June 18-19: Reframing for Social Justice and Sustainability

Do you want to create project-based curriculum that supports all learners to engage, achieve, and contribute to healthy future?
In partnership with the University of Michigan School of Education, CCES is offering a hands-on, 2-day master class. The class provides knowledge, skills, and a step-wise process to develop curriculum grounded in the concepts of healthy communities, democratic societies, and social justice.

Change your curriculum to change students’ lives.

Starting with either existing or planned curriculum, you’ll receive guidance to develop or redesign a unit or course that engages students in authentic problem-solving while also meeting required standards and content. We know you care about connecting educational equity and community well-being, and this workshop will give you tools to put that into practice and change your students’ lives.  

Participants will:

  • Gain a fresh, interdisciplinary understanding of their curriculum
  • (Re)design a unit or course sequenced to promote engagement, inquiry, decision-making, and positive action.
  • Apply a “backwards design” process to align outcomes, instruction, and assessment.
  • Receive an instructional design booklet with support tools and frameworks for the participant’s individual classroom use.
  • Earn 12 Michigan SCECHs (State Continuing Education Clock Hours).

Who should attend?

  • Individual pre- or in-service teachers in any discipline or grade who are interested in democratic education, place-based education, sustainability education, culturally-responsive teaching, and related approaches.
  • Teams of educators from the same institution interested in more systemic change.
  • University professors from any discipline who are interested in integrating sustainability, social justice, and experiential learning into their courses.
  • Curriculum leaders seeking to learn about fresh approaches to improving instruction.

What is the cost?

  • $169
  • Reduced price for current or former U of M students: $75 

Don’t miss this opportunity!

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Earth Day After Party - April 21 in Keene

You're invited to an Earth Day After Party taking place after the Monadnock Earth Day Festival on Saturday April 21st from roughly 4:30 to 6:30 at the Hive in the Hannah Grimes Center. It’ll be a chance to mix and mingle with other earth-friendly peers and explore ideas in a relaxed, easy-going environment.over food and drink.
The idea for gathering was inspired by monthly potlucks hosted by The Community Kitchen's Sarah Harpster; sharing good food, intriguing ideas and engaging conversation in an informal setting.The Earth Day After Party is a chance to continue to connect over food and drink with peers. Our invite list is by no means comprehensive, so please forward to others in your network who might in interested. We hope you’ll join us!

Whole Terrain literary journal and C&S Wholesale Grocers have helped secure us the space for this event. The Community Kitchen is providing snacks. There will also be a cash bar hosted byMachina Arts. If you have any questions, please contact the group at

The next potluck lunch will be at the offices of the National Center for Appropriate Technology: 16 Church Street, Keene on 18 April at 11:30. Let us know if you're interested.
Hope to see you soon,
Rachel Brice, Westmoreland Garden Manager, AUNE
Jess Gerrior, Workplace Garden Fellow, C&S/AUNE
Sarah Harpster, Gleaning Coordinator, The Community Kitchen
Daniel Prial, Outreach Coordinator, NCAT
Rowland Russel, Managing Director, Whole Terrain, AUNE
Zoey Sloate, Business Analyst, C&S Wholesale Grocers
Carolyn Sweet, Coalition Coordinator, ​Monadnock Understands Childhood Hunger (​MUCH​)

Day-after-Earth-Day update:

The event was a success! A few dozen people from the Monadnock region gathered for celebration and connection at The Hive, and we had a great time. The series of potluck lunches that spurred this action continues in May! These are some of the organizers and after-partiers who stayed late:

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Ways you can boost local food security, get nature time, and build community with the Westmoreland Garden Project

The Westmoreland Garden Project, situated along the Connecticut River at the site of a former county jail, is where Community Garden Connections (CGC) graduate students and volunteers grow food for The Community Kitchen, with support through Antioch University New England (AUNE) and Cheshire County Conservation District.

It's an amazing project. It's providing opportunities to grow food along with skills and networks that enhance climate resilience, get people in nature, encourage healthy eating, promote service learning, and build community. It is a lot of work, and so much fun.

The Westmoreland Garden Project is inviting help from community members to expand its capacity and get things done this season. Check out the ways you can help, and if you can provide any of these, let's CONNECT.

April-May 2018:
  • Help preparing for burning things, help burning things. We have a permit for Saturday, April 14 (same day as the pruning workshop). If it is raining that day, the brush pile can be burned during the day, otherwise it has to wait until 5pm and can go through the night until 9am. I'm willing to do the burn part if nobody else wants to/can, but the brush pile needs to be trimmed and stacked better... (which is what the fire marshal said) And it looks like someone was already out there and tried to burn it? Maybe the same person who has been pruning trees? But I don't know who.
  • Doors for the high tunnel. That is a necessity. They don't need to be fancy, someone could even build one, but the door does need to be passable for a wheelbarrow.
  • Is it possible to schedule a team work day for Tuesday the 10th, to get all the tools and hoses and such back out to Westmoreland? That will give us a week before the first community work day is planned. It's looking to be pretty grey and cloudy for quite some time, but I'm not seeing active rain in the forecast on that day. Could also be a good time to trim the brush pile.
  • A new lock and key for the shed.
  • Having free manure would be great, so yes, truck and driver would also be good. I've been following a lead on a possible donation of compost, but don't have an answer on that yet.
  • Mulch straw. (I'm trying to work with Horse & Buggy but don't know if they'll come through on a donation) 
  • Woodchips. (haven't checked with the transfer station - they might have some?)
  • Someone to take out all of those metal posts that are by the apple trees and old plum tree stumps - they'd be great for building tomato supports. I tried pulling them out of the ground but they're buried deep.
  • Someone to take the plum tree stumps to the ground - they're about three feet tall right now.
  • T-posts (also for building tomato supports) or some other such sturdy thing. (again, thought of checking the transfer station) Wooden poles rot and also can't be sanitized.
  • Someone to move the granite stones for the outdoor classroom space Madi planned.
  • I think we need some new small hand tools (hand trowels, small hand rakes) for volunteers. We have some but some of the trowels are quite damaged and should be replaced.
  • Do we have a large beverage cooler? Like the ones sports teams use? If not, that would be a lovely addition to volunteer work days.
  • The first aid kit needs to be checked and re-filled.