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What’s new with Manitoba Nature Action Collaborative for Children?

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For those of you who attend meetings with our friends MNACC or who’ve never attended but always wanted to- here is the recently decided meeting schedule and topics for the 2011/12 season.

For those of you who are asking “What the heck is an MNACC and what does it have to do to the Nature Summit?” please refer to the About page for more information on our relationship. The short answer is that MNACC is the mother of the Nature Summit.

The Nature Summit started with MNACC, we all have the same goals we just work towards them in different ways. MNACC has meetings that discuss topics such as: How to build an adventure/nature playground, How to maximize outdoor time for children, Where to begin with a gardening program for your school/ ELCC program and much, much, more. The Nature Summit is a nature education immersion conference for educators and administrators to directly experience nature, rediscover wonder, and develop practical skills. Despite these differences all the people who work on the Nature Summit attend MNACC meetings and some of those who sit on the planning committee at MNACC also work on the Nature Summit. Hope that helps.

Sooooooo….. here’s the scoop for the upcoming year:

September 21, 2011 – Dialogue with Outdoor Spaces

  • A very interesting opportunity has come our way so we will be bringing together our MNACC group with the MB RICE (Manitoba Reggio-Inspired Coalition of Educators) group for a first-hand look at and conversation about the new Assiniboine Park Nature Playground. Please meet by the water feature which is centrally located in the Nature Playground
  • Guest speaker will be a MNACC favourite, Marc Battle, who was also one of the consultants during the visioning and planning of this great space.
  • November 3, 2011Nature and your School. – 7:00 – 9:00 pm
    • Due to the larger number of inquiries into the reconnecting children to nature movement from within the Education sector we have decided to dedicate one whole meeting to this sector.  We are counting on those of you on this e-mail list who have contacts within the world of Elementary schools to do your best to invite and bring along your friends so they too can be introduced to the many great things that are happening at other school.  Or perhaps your interest is in coming and sharing what is happening at your school, and that too would be most welcome.
    • We are hoping to have 2 or 3 groups (yet to be confirmed) share about their journey and experiences (about 15-20 minutes) follow by at least 20 minutes of conversations and questions, followed by the next group.  We are pursuing the Mb. Education Sustainable Working Group, The Evergreen Foundation, and a Principal / Child Care Director team (who have done a join project) as our speakers for the night.  For now please keep the date open.  Details will follow.
    • This meeting was significantly influenced by the class from the U of W that Guy McKim taught last year.  Their response to my presentation has really inspired me to connect the worlds of Education and what we will refer to as (ELCC) Early Learning and Child Care (formerly “day care”).
    • This meeting will be a first of its kind for our group so I’m hoping that you make it a success by choosing to attend and inviting friends who work either in the Education or the ELCC sectors.
  • March 1, 2012 Two Weeks Outside – Kids absolutely love it and it’s easier than you think! – 7:00 – 9:00 pm
    • Inspired by the brave teachers and children in what appears to have been at least 4 centres in Manitoba we are dedicating this evening to the de-mystification of, and the inspiration for, taking your program outside for an extended period of time.
    • Staff from the participating centres in  2011 will be sharing how they planned for, lessons they learned and the great benefits they experienced from their experiment.
    • We are trusting that this will inspire many more centres (and perhaps classroom teachers) to take up the challenge in 2012 to extend their learning environments into the outdoors in ways that they night have never thought of.  Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for you to try a Half day – full day – single week – or multiply week program, outdoors, with your children.
    • I just got invited to present our Centre’s experience with a “Two Week Outside” program, at a conference in New Zealand in 2012.  I’m so proud of the adventuresome spirit that is raising up in Manitoba, and that people from around the world are taking note. BRAVO ECE’s !
  • May 24, 2012 – Lessons from outside Manitoba – 7:00 – 9:00 pm
    • We believe we have a treasure chest of educators who bring with them a great variety of experiences surrounding children and nature from other parts of the Canada and the World.  Our goal is to bring together some of these people to further inspire us Manitobans, open our eyes, and get us to rethink some of our core beliefs about children.
    • We have a short list of candidates (we are probably looking for 2-3) that we will approach, but if you are aware of or are one of these “treasures” please make yourselves know to us so we can make further plans as to who will present on this evening.
    • We have strategically picked conference (MCCA ( Manitoba Child Care Association)) Thursday so that some of our many out of town friends will find it easier to join us in person.

If you have a suggestion for a location, would like to contribute to a meeting, or RSVP contact Ron Blatz at Discovery Children’s Centre. Or feel free to write to and we will be happy to pass your messages along.

See You There!

1 thought on “What’s new with Manitoba Nature Action Collaborative for Children?”

  1. Pingback: Meeting of the Minds (and wallets) | Manitoba Nature Summit

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