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Deeptime Learning in a K-8 Public School (Non-Montessori)


Traci Pannullo

Level(s):Grade K-8

Available Now!  2 PD Hours

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with Traci Pannullo & RVCS Community Members

Level(s): Grades K – 8

Video Webcast and Recording of Live Q&A Available Now!

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The mission of the Ridge and Valley Charter School is to educate for a flourishing future. “We believe,” says Traci Panullo, “that in order for this to occur humans must experience a profound shift in their understanding of and relationship with the earth, universe and each other. Part of this shift has to do with what we study, but most of the shift has to do with changing the lens, angle or perspective from which we view the world and our stories of it. The current anthropocentric approach to understanding things has led to a disconnection from relationships and the corresponding wide-ranging impact of our choices. We seek to move into a more system-based, ecocentric view of the world in which learning and understanding occur within the larger, holistic context of the Earth and Universe.

This holistic understanding of the impact of choices within any system, combined with immersion in the natural world, stirs a deep wonder, awe, respect and responsibility for our planet and universe. Our intention is for students to see themselves not as separate from the intricate tapestry of the universe and the world around them but rather as a thread in the greater whole. Utilizing experiential educational practices whenever possible, we seek to cultivate in students the practical skills and knowledge necessary for becoming confident and articulate as well as self-regulating, self-disciplined and self-motivated individuals. Our intention is to support individual students within the context of the whole so that they can continually transform themselves on their life journeys into being rich, important and effective agents for and models of sustainable living and change.

This webcast will provide an introduction to the philosophy, curriculum framework, structures and strategies we employ to create the Deep Time context for the children’s experience. This will include images, with narration, to illustrate the Lenses and KLEs. Additionally, we hope to include footage of the school in action, sort of a “day in the life”, to try to convey the essence of how Deep Time is deeply infused into the culture of the school.

You will take away . . . a clear sense of how Deep Time can provide the context for a systemic educational experience and a child’s unfolding view of the world, not just as an overlayed “content area.”

Bio: I’ve experienced a great respect for and kinship with the natural world all through my life and this has inspired me to humbly learn about and promote actions that are in alignment with the elemental processes of the universe. It has led to my passionate pursuit of innovative, holistic, progressive, and indigenous wisdoms whose intention is to reawaken humans’ intimate relationship with the earth, and which fosters humans’ natural joy and desire for connection and learning. For the past 24 years I have pursued the study and practice of alternative educational philosophies, such as Montessori, democratic, and Waldorf, incorporating many of these ideas into my practice in various educational settings. Most of those beliefs and practices have come together for me at Ridge and Valley Charter School (RVCS) and I’m inspired every day by the work of all of the people in the RVCS community to create amazing alternative and holistic learning experiences! I am so proud and grateful that all 3 of my children have had the opportunity to attend RVCS, and can’t imagine a more wonderful school experience for them. I joined the trustees a year before the school opened, then became the curriculum coordinator and a member of the RVCS Leadership Team. I love organic gardening, cooking, yoga and tai chi, singing, making art, dancing and drumming. I’m always eager to learn more about healthy sustainable practices, especially related to food, architecture, energy, waste, work and relationships. I love to talk with others about the astounding connections and complexities of our universe!

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