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Educating for “Ecoliteracy” in the Montessori Classroom

Presenters: Seth Johnson and Tara Hartley
Levels: Elementary I and II
CPD Hours: 1.5
Available: On Demand

Individual Rental Group Rental


On-Demand Webinar

The presentation is available for a 30-day rental via Vimeo On Demand, allowing you to view the webinar at any time, as often as you would like, within your rental period.

$55/individual (Certificate of Continuing Professional Development for 1 person)
$200/group (CPD certificates for up to 20 persons)


Ecological literacy is our ability to understand the basic principles of ecology and live accordingly. The Center for Ecoliteracy in Berkeley, CA, considers it to be the great educational challenge of our time, with the future of human civilization hanging in the balance. For human society to achieve a long-term sustainable future, we must understand how nature organizes itself and model our cities, products, and institutions on nature’s designs.

Ecoliteracy is also essential for the present wellbeing of children, as Richard Louv eloquently addresses in his book, Last Child in the Woods.

This workshop will present Montessori prepared environments as ideal places in which to foster the habits of mind, hand, and heart needed to achieve a sustainable future for our planet. We will:

  • Explore 3 “roots” of eco-literacy: the Universe Story, systems thinking, and deep ecology
  • Discuss the concept of biomimicry (imitating nature’s designs) as a path towards a more sustainable world
  • Outline 3 paths through which our schools can cultivate ecological ways of living and learning: embracing Montessori’s cosmic curriculum; adopting the strategies of place-based education; and reducing our ecological footprint.

This webinar will explore the numerous connections between the Montessori and Children & Nature movements and offer practical ways to promote “ecological literacy” in our prepared environments. Our purpose and focus: to inform, energize, and inspire you with the possibilities of working in concert with these shared goals.

Learner Outcomes

  • Ability to use mini-lessons, games, and songs to encourage “systems thinking” across the curriculum
  • Reduce your school’s ecological footprint through student-led “green teams”
  • Foster a love of nature through Goings Out, Pedagogy of Place, Earth Day celebrations, and cutting-edge ideas such as biomimicry and deep ecology

Seth Johnson, MS (curriculum and instruction), is an Upper Elementary teacher at Lexington Montessori School in Lexington, MA, and a faculty member at the Montessori Elementary Teacher Training Collaborative, also in Lexington. AMS-credentialed (Elementary I, Elementary II).

Tara Hartley, MS (ecological teaching and learning), is a Lower Elementary teacher at Lexington Montessori School in Lexington, MA. AMS-credentialed (Elementary II).

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