Stewards of the Sheldon Community Forest

Instructional Design for our TSLC 2007 project.

Unit Title: Stewards of Sheldon Community Forest

Authors: Nilah Cote, Marvin Bicknell, Dana Tessin

Important Information about this unit: Stewards of the Sheldon Community Forest is a multi-age( 3-8), interdisciplinary program of studies that was created by three teachers at Sheldon School who participated in Tech Savvy Learning Community 2007. This course taught us a new set of techonology skills and tools which include: web pages, wikis, podcasts, and other Web 2.0 applications which we are now ready to teach to our students. We are excited to share this unit with our students, and the members of our local and global communities.

Unit Overview: The goal of this unit is to provide both ecological experiences, and tech learning opportunities to our students. Bordering the school property, we are fortunate to have an 88 acre outdoor classroom known as the Sheldon Community Forest. The unit focuses on the social and ecological issues of the forest, and hopes to instill in our students a sense of their responsibilites as stewards of the forest in the years to come. This is a collaborative effort to bring our students into the digital age, and to teach and model for them the 21st century technology skills that they will need in the future.

Essential Question: How are forests important?
  • How are forests valuable to different individuals for different reasons? (economic, cultural, recreational, ecological, and aesthetic)

Guiding Questions:
  • What natural resources do the people of Franklin County obtain from our forests?
  • What can you do to protect and preserve the forests in our community?
  • How are forests managed?
  • What are characteristics of our forest's ecology?
  • How does the forest sustain our economy?
  • What are the sensory, spiritual, emotional and artistic characteristics of forests that have inspired poets and authors?

Student Products: Students will produce podcasts and contribute to class wikis. Students will plan and contribute to a stewardship project in the Sheldon Community Forest. Students will present their information on tree species in the Sheldon Community Forest at the Arbor Day Festival. Students will present and explain the Sheldon Community Forest Management Plan Map for 2007. Participating students will develop a Sheldon Community Forest document which will reflect their vision for the Sheldon Community Forest and other forest resources as to how it might be protected and conserved. This document then becomes a guide for the School's Forest Committee as it revises its management plan and conducts forest-related activities.


Culminating Task:

Arbor Day Festival in May 2008