Permaculture in Education (night talk and all-day workshop)

Fri Nov 1st - 6-8:30pm night talk at Om Culture in Seattle, $10 at the door
Sat Nov 2nd - 9am-6pm full-day workshop at Om Culture in Seattle, register online:


[semester equivalent = 0.6 credits] WA PDU HRS: 9
INSTRUCTORS: Michael Becker


The current public education system places little or no value on connection to nature and sustainability.
However, a new model of education is brewing: one that will support our children to make connections with
the natural world and patterns in nature, to grow and harvest food, to interact with the community and our
elders, to create systems that support a more sustainable educational and economic future. We will use the
Hood River Middle School (HRMS) Food & Conservation Science Program (FACS) as our guide as we delve
into the process of student directed learning. Using the HRMS case study as a model, we will examine
development strategies for schools seeking to increase the ideas of sustainability & regenerative design
while staying true to the already tall order of standards facing teachers today. We will use permaculture
design principles to develop scalable, student­directed plans. We will also join forces to network and change
Material covered will be applicable and will be appropriate for all school staff and educators (administrators,
teachers, parents, support staff and instructional assistants). $21 for Gaia's Garden: A Guide to
Home­Scale Permaculture, new (or used) from includes shipping. Please purchase and read
the text prior to class.


As a result of taking this course, participants will:
1. Have an understanding of what permaculture is and how it can be introduced into the the learning
2. Obtain inspiration from permaculture principles and how patterns in nature influence permaculture
3. Understand why it is so important to bring sustainability into education
4. Identify and discuss the steps each school and each classroom teacher can take towards creating
a more sustainable environment for their students. If a homeschooler, identify and discuss the steps
that the family can make in regard to their children’s education that will support sustainable
concepts and actions
5. See examples of permaculture in schools and sustainable models in education
6. Discuss the current education system flaws in regard to sustainability and community; but leave
with a plan of action towards a solution
7. Make connections with other educators to join together and make real change happen


Continuing Education Quarter credits are awarded by Antioch University Seattle. Following are the course
requirements weighted for determining the granting of university quarter credit. Antioch University Seattle
requires 75% or better to issue quarter credit at the 400 level and 85% or better at the 500 level.
1. Attendance and active participation in all class sessions 40%
2. Reading of articles, handouts, books and texts 30%
3. Satisfactory completion of all outside assignments 30%
Permaculture in Schools & Education (1-credit) 1 Rev 9/15/[masked] & 500 LEVEL OUTSIDE ASSIGNMENT
All assignments must reflect class discussions and outside reading. Depending on your preferences and
professional situation, complete one of the following:
1. Watch the below videos: The Fibonacci series (3 videos) and both podcasts on Invisible Structures.
Write a 2 page journal entry that talks about how humans can be conscious about invisible
structures and how invisible structures can influence designs. Also mention your favorite Fibonacci
pattern and why it is your favorite.
1. Write a 2 page reflection paper that details a significant learning from the course. (Ex: describe one
permaculture­influenced change that you would like to implement into your classroom or teaching
structure; outline a plan of the actions you will take to bring sustainability into your classroom or
teaching structure over the next year). Be sure to include how this learning impacts your
understanding and future interactions with your students and learners.
In addition to the 400 level assignment, complete the following:
1. Organize a group of 3­4 individuals (either individuals from this course or those you know outside of
this course) that are interested in bringing sustainability into the classroom; meet with each other
within the next 2 weeks and create a timeline and plan of action for how you will implement a
specific element of permaculture design into the classroom or school system. This element can be
administrative or policy related. It can be curriculum orientated. It should be action­based and
reasonable to achieve within the current or next school year. Write a 2 page paper explaining your
plan of action and the next steps you will take


● Papers should be typed and double­spaced, and emailed to the instructors.
● All assignments are due to the instructors within 2 weeks of the last class session


Toby Hemenway. Gaia's Garden: A Guide to Home­Scale Permaculture. Chelsea Green Publishing. 2009.
328 pages, ISBN­10:[masked]


$21 ­ Toby Hemenway. Gaia's Garden: A Guide to Home­Scale Permaculture. Also bring lunch and


Please indicate in your email message that you’d like to receive our comments on your work


Michael Becker, M.A., is a teacher and the director of the Food and Conservation Science (FACS) at Hood
River Middle School. He also directs the Permaculture Classroom Project, a hands­on approach to teaching
math and science using Permaculture and sustainability science concepts. Over the past several years,
through project based learning with his students, he has successfully turned his Grade 6, 7 & 8 classroom
into a Permaculture learning garden with a greenhouse, forest garden, pond system, chickens & more.
Partnered with the Gorge Grown Food Network, a local organization seeking independent local food
systems in the Columbia River Gorge, a farmers market has been developed at the school further involving
students into the economics of food production. Michael has a BS in Geography and a Masters in
Education from Portland State University, and is currently pursuing a PhD in Sustainability Science at
Prescott College. Michael has studied with some of the most inspiring Permaculture educators including the
Permaculture in Schools & Education (1-credit) 2 Rev 9/15/2013Bullocks & Toby Hemenway. The Oregon Middle School Association named Mr. Becker the 2008 Oregon
Middle School Association Teacher of the Year for his efforts in integrated and applied, science and math


Sat Nov 2nd 2013 from 9am to 6pm
Workshop will be held at OmCulture in Seattle
2210 N Pacific St
Seattle, WA 98103


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