Field Chats Episode 001: Introducing Field Chats with Earth Force

Hello and welcome to Field Chats: Environmental Action Civics Essentials!

My name is Sarah Jennings – I’m the Chesapeake Bay program Manager with Earth Force and I’m here with my colleagues here today for our very first episode of Environmental Action Civics Essentials. Hello everyone I’m Taylor Ruffin the Colorado Program Manager at Earth Force. And hey all, I’m Alyssa McConkey Chief Program Officer at Earth Force and behind the scenes here we have with us our fabulous Communications manager Hayley Valley. Hi everyone! Hey Hayley! 

Alright, we’re going to get started here today! So here at Earth Force, we are the home of Environmental Action Civics and we exist to increase youth participation in environmental decision making. In Environmental Action Civics, students share power with adults, they practice democratic decisionmaking and address local environmental problems using civics. Adults are right beside them igniting a new generation of decision makers. We work nationwide with all different types of adults to help them facilitate Environmental Action Civics – this includes kindergarten all the way up to 12th grade – this also includes after school educators and Municipal agencies, environmental ed orgs, as well as adults who provide them training etc. 

So what is Environmental Action Civics? You’ll hear us refer to it as EAC because it can be a bit of a mouthful and so when we’re talking about EAC, we’re talking about a very different kind of approach. It’s an approach to teaching, to educating that helps young people learn by connecting their lessons to their own experiences and communities and by practicing the skills and dispositions of citizenship. So students are investigating their community, they’re identifying issues that they care about, and then developing plans to improve their community and put those plans into action. So I’m really excited to kick off these Field Chats with you today! Taylor, can you tell us more about when these will be happening?

Thanks, Sarah! I think that was an amazing explanation of Earth force and what we’ll be doing. And new this year. we’re introducing these Field Chats – every other Friday starting today – two times a month in addition to our other supporting resources, we’ll be having these chats where we’ll be sharing our resources, tips and conversations with EAC practitioners. So, a lot of those resources will be centering around what we call the Earth Force Process. Tips from practitioners, educators, and just great conversations to hear about the work that comes from these action projects – these EAC projects.

Those ripples that come from those conversations really emphasize the impact that we have on communities that we work that extend upon those Direct Services – because we’re we’re really here to support Educators that work with young folks to take action in their communities and so it’s really great to kind of hear that come back that Ripple coming back and so during these field chats we’ll  be joined by friends and partners and other Earth Force staff members to really dive into how we accomplish this work.

Woohoo I’m so excited! So we hope that you all are excited too and really can engage and learn from us in this Field Chat space and that we can learn from you as well. You’ll be able to find these Field Chats on our blog which is on our website earthforce.org. On the blog, you can review these and you can bookmark your favorites. But please do leave us a comment – we’d love to know what we’re doing well, what can we improve on, other things you would like to see, or hear about, or if you have ideas of folks that we should talk to, topics, etc.

Our big goal here again is to just really bring you all some easy to access enjoyable little tidbits to help you better implement Environmental Action Civics. So, thanks so much for joining us today. We can’t wait to hear what you think! Tell us how we’re doing – remember to visit us on our blog and leave a comment there. You can engage with us in our socials and such too and tell us where you’re tuning in from. We’d love to hear from you.

So that’s all from our Earth Force staff today – thanks everyone for being here and we look forward to seeing you in two weeks for our next Field Chat. See you soon! Thanks everyone. Bye!

Written by -

Hayley Valley, Earth Force's Communications Manager, joined Earth Force in 2010 and has since held too many roles to count - all drawing on her experience in communicating Earth Force's commitment to environmental action civics. When she’s not knee-deep in Google Docs, you’ll find her chasing her two boys around.

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