For Immediate Release
August 24, 2018
Contact: Stephen Streufert
San Francisco, CA — With funding from the S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation, NatureBridge has convened a group of organizations to collaboratively work through the question of how to most effectively incorporate Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) frameworks, research, and preferred practices into residential environmental education (EE) programming.
Selected Residential Environmental Education Partnership (REEP) organizations include YMCA Camp Orkila, NorthBay Education Foundation, Multnomah Education Services District Outdoor School, Teton Science School, Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont, The Ecology School, Canyonlands Field Institute, Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Sierra Nevada Journeys and Wolf Ridge. In addition to these ten organizations, BEETLES representatives will join NatureBridge as thought partners in this work.
More than 65 organizations expressed interest from across the U.S. and Canada. Participating REEP organizations were chosen for their geographic reach, organizational capacity, diversity of participants served and unique perspectives on SEL.
Over the next year, NatureBridge and the ten REEP organizations will aggregate collective wisdom in the service of establishing common language and developing shared tools related to SEL in the context of residential EE. To ensure that this effort is truly collaborative, the working group will be facilitated by Learning for Action. NatureBridge is eager to engage with other residential EE organizations to develop such common language and better understand the role of SEL in our field.
“We are both excited and humbled by the opportunity to collaborate and contribute to our sector and we look forward to sharing our collective findings to engage the greater environmental education sector in a meaningful way,” said Estrella Risinger, National Education Manager.
Ultimately, REEP findings will be disseminated to the extended residential EE community.
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Founded in 1971, NatureBridge connects young people to the wonder and science of the natural world, igniting self-discovery and inspiring stewardship of our planet. As the largest residential education partner of the National Park Service, the organization serves more than 35,000 students each year and offers programs in national park locations in California, Washington state and Virginia. For more information, visit naturebridge.org.