Tuesday, February 25, 2014

EE Centers, Parks, Science Museums Dominate Carolina Publishing Associates "Most Visited" List

The numbers are in...Carolina Publishing Associates has released it's list of the top 30 most-visited attractions in North Carolina. Eighteen of them are listed as N.C. Environmental Education Centers on our list and offer some type of environmental education and/or natural sciences programming for the public. (Facilities in bold are listed as N.C. Environmental Education Centers on www.eenorthcarolina.org)

1. Biltmore, Asheville, 1,210,138. 

2. NC Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh, 1,026,177.

3. North Carolina Zoo, Asheboro, 739,943.

4. Fort Macon State Park, Atlantic Beach, 722,260.

5. Discovery Place, Charlotte, 705,845.

6. Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh. 648,450.

7. Fort Fisher State Historic Site, Kure Beach. 614,158.

8.Wright Brothers National Memorial, Kill Devil Hills, 489,123.

9. NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher, Kure Beach, 447,892.

10. Museum of Life and Science, Durham, 421,095.

11. NC Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores, 389, 612.

12. Jennette's Pier, Nags Head, 308,786.

13. North Carolina Arboretum, Asheville. 332,748.

14. Greensboro Science Center, 325,536.

15. NC Maritime Museums (Beaufort, Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum, Hatteras, NC Maritime Museum at Southport), 325,921.

16. NC Museum of History, Raleigh. 288,800.

17. North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, 287,605.

18. NC Aquarium at Roanoke Island, Manteo, 275,141.

19. Fort Raleigh National Historic Park, Manteo, 264,942.

20. Grandfather Mountain, Linville, 314,127.

21. Battleship North Carolina, Wilmington, 211,724

22. Chimney Rock State Park, Chimney Rock. 194,073.

23. Duke University Chapel, Durham, 182,215.

24. Tryon Palace, New Bern 181,350.

25. NASCAR Hall of Fame, Charlotte, 173,024.

26. Linville Caverns, Marion, 170,689.

27. Old Salem Museums & Gardens, Winston-Salem, 146,900.

28. Cherokee Cultural Attractions, Cherokee, 145,778.

29. Morehead Planetarium, Chapel Hill, NC 142,135.

30. Mint Museums, Charlotte, 142,057.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Author, Educator Sobel to Keynote Southeastern EE Alliance Annual Conference in Asheboro

Exciting news! Our friends the Environmental Educators of North Carolina (EENC) will be hosting the Southeastern Environmental Education Alliance (SEEA) Annual Conference at Caraway Camp and Conference Center near Asheboro, North Carolina on Sept. 19-21. The SEEA is a network of state affiliates of the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) located in the southeastern region of the U.S. Member states include AL, FL, GA, KY, MS, NC, SC, and TN. SEEA is one of only two regional affiliates of NAAEE. For more information on the conference, visit the EENC website. 

EENC is also proud to announce that well-known educator and author David Sobel will keynote the event! Sobel is Senior Faculty in the Education Department at Antioch University New England in Keene, NH and he consults and speaks widely on child development and place-based education. He has authored seven books and more than 60 articles focused on children and nature for educators, parents, environmentalists and school administrators in the last 25 years. In 2007, he was identified as one of the Daring Dozen educators in the United States by Edutopia magazine.

He has served on the editorial boards of Encounter, Community Works Journal and Orion and writes a regular column for Community Works Journal. His articles and essays have appeared in Orion, Encounter, Sierra, Sanctuary, Wondertime, Green Teacher, Play Rights, Harvard Education Letter and other publications. His articles and essays have been included in Father Nature, Education, Information and Transformation, Stories from Where We Live-The North Atlantic Coast; Place-based Education in a Global Age; and The Child: An Encyclopedic Companion published by The University of Chicago. His most recent books are Childhood and Nature: Design Principles for Educators published by Stenhouse and Wild Play, Parenting Adventures in the Great Outdoors published by Sierra Books.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

NC Beautiful Announces Windows of Opportunity Grant Recipients

NC Beautiful, a provider of environmental education and beautification opportunities that elevate the quality of life of North Carolinians, has announced this year’s recipients of the organization’s environmental education grants. Thirty schools were awarded Windows of Opportunity Grants that are available to certified, full-time K-12 teachers in the state of North Carolina.

Windows of Opportunity provides up to $1,000 grants to NC teachers to reward their creativity fostering environmental stewardship, leadership, and awareness and initiating a sense of community service. Since 1999, NC Beautiful has awarded tens of thousands of grant dollars to schools all across North Carolina—from the mountains to the coast. NC Beautiful Executive Director, Steve Vacendak, says that the goal of NC Beautiful is to annually offer a Windows of Opportunity grant in all 100 counties in North Carolina. “Promoting and fostering environmental stewardship is a state-wide commitment,” says Vacendak. “By rewarding our teachers throughout our state for their innovation and hard work, we can ensure that our children and grandchildren are participating in a project that sparks a lifelong interest in nature. They will appreciate this beautiful state even more for having had a teacher who went above and beyond to give them a hands-on, real world experience. We are proud to be a small part of that discovery.” 

The Windows of Opportunity Grants were created to cultivate an appreciation of natural environments by helping children get out of school and into natural settings. The grants also build leadership awareness, develop environmental educational mentors and ambassadors, create materials and resources that can be used by other K-12 students, and develop a sustainable, outdoor program, which will continue well after the grant period ends. 

Entries for next year’s Windows of Opportunity Grants will be accepted online starting July, 2014. For more information, visit www.ncbeautiful.org

NC Beautiful has been part of the state’s environmental preservation community for over 40 years—supporting awareness, education and beautification efforts that affect our quality of life. Today, NC Beautiful concentrates on hands-on and merit-based programs designed to empower citizens to preserve the natural beauty of the state of North Carolina. Whether it’s school children building outdoor classrooms, graduate students developing cutting edge research, or a Boy Scout troop planting azaleas at an elder care facility, NC Beautiful makes it possible for North Carolinians to keep NC Beautiful. 

Celeste Maus, teacher at Perquimans High School in Hertford, accepts her Windows of Opportunity Grant award from NC Beautiful board member Tim Aydlett and NC Beautiful Executive Director Steve Vacendak. 

Name School City
Nancy Bryant Burlington Christian Academy Burlington
Tyler Mitchell Alexander Central Taylorsville
Lee Ann Smith Glen Arden Elementary Arden
Britta Gramer Morganton Day School Morganton
Mark Patton Terry Sanford High School Fayetteville
Rebecca Johnson and Rodney Metters North Davidson Middle School Lexington
Keith Stanek Tyro Middle School Lexington
Jake Pittillo Clear Creek Elementary Hendersonville
Richele Dunavent and Courtney Ruiz Sugarloaf Elementary Hendersonville
Kathy Bosiak Lincolnton High School Lincolnton
Tracy Rettig/Kim Kelleher New Hope Elementary School Chapel Hill
Carla Wilkins Helena Elementary Timberlake
Nancy Pepper Green Valley Elementary Boone
Sherry Maines Glade Creek School Ennice
Tricia Gaible Sparta Elementary Sparta
Tiffany Mayo West Carteret High School Morehead City
Paul Gainey ASPIRE Program New Bern
Alison Edwards School for Creative Studies Durham
Bess C. Adcock Granville Central High School Stem
Richele Dunavent, Courtney Ruiz Sugarloaf Elementary Hendersonville
Lisa Chestnutt Mattamuskeet Early College                     Swan Quarter    
Debra H. Jones Clayton High School Kinston
Cliff Hudson Contentnea/Savannah School Williamston
Amy Alexander Riverside High School Elizabeth City
Stacey Pierce Perquimans Central School Hertford
Celeste Wescott Maus Perquimans High School Hertford
Catherine Rohrbaugh Perquimans County High School Raleigh
Jennifer E. Schwachenwald Holly Grove Middle School Wake Forest
Jason Hunning Dillard Drive Middle School Raleigh
Heather Hale Wake Forest Elementary Raleigh