2014 Conference LogoTeachers and partners joined together for another great statewide conference this November.  The theme of presentations ranged from civic engagement and community partnership best practices, to student voice and STEAM connections.  Here are highlights from SEMIS partner and teacher presentations:

1)  Where stewardship and civics meet: Exploring students’ civic learning in place-based stewardship efforts

This discussion session focused on the results of research efforts in two place-based education programs, exploring how PBE can increase students’ feeling of connection to their communities, capacity for civic action and commitment to stewardship of their local environment.

Presenters:  Erin Gallay, Lisa Marckini-Polk and Brandon Schroeder

2)  Making Change in the City – Detroit Youth Energy Squad

In this workshop, adult crew leaders and youth participants from the Detroit Youth Energy Squad shared their experiences from designing and implementing six-week summer projects in four “sustainability tracks”– food justice, neighborhood “greenification”, weatherization, and “green aqua”.  Participants gained ideas for fostering teamwork, working with neighbors and community partners, meeting with decision-makers, and creating meaningful capstone presentations.

Presenters:  Justin Schott with students and staff of Ecoworks’ Detroit Youth Energy Squad

3)  Student place-based community stewardship efforts at the Detroit Institute of Technology

This teacher and high school student led discussion session included a brief presentation of student place-based efforts followed by mini student lead roundtables. Students outlined their work as Youth Ambassadors, acting as a voice for their community through advocacy and peer education. Roundtable sessions focused on DIT’s vision to be a force for change and hope within the community, through their school/community gardens, partnership development, community-public art and resource conservation efforts.

Presenters:  Chad Segrist and students