Down to Earth Chapter One: HOPE
10.58 minutes, Iceland and USA, 2017
In April 2017, First Grade teacher, Michaela Precourt embarked on an epic journey. Michaela has created a project called Down to Earth Expeditions, a series of five arctic ski expeditions that she hopes will ignite the minds and spirit of the next generation of environmental advocates. All the voyages will be human-powered, using skis, sea kayaks, and sailboats, and fueled by an intentional and sustainable diet. Down to Earth Expeditions mission seeks to instill environmental stewardship within students by creating a connection to the natural world.
Down to Earth Expeditions “chapters’ have Michaela and her team corresponding with participating schools from different locations pinned with GPS coordinates, pictures, and field reports. Students tuning in learned about geology and wildlife biology, gain insight into living sustainably and close to nature, and witness real-time changes in the planet’s coldest climates. Michaela and team have worked to convert her experiences into a formal curriculum that could supplement lesson plans at independent and public institutions.
As we move forward, we as humans need to continue having a more authentic connection to our world in order to understand it, appreciate it, and help it. Each year a group of educators, teachers, pro-athletes, and/or scientists will go on a trip to a remote Arctic location to have an experience they can share with the students across the globe. At DTE we want to give adults the opportunity to reflect, find their sense of place, and build connections; so to bring inspiration to communities.
This year Michaela Precourt teaches at a multi-age expeditionary learning school in Methow Valley, WA. This year (2017/18) DTE will start an exchange program. Where her students will travel to the Gates of the Arctic in Anaktuvuk Pass, Alaska and students of the Arctic will travel to Methow Valley to collaborate on issues in their environment in regards to the watershed and caribou and what they can do about it. She hopes to open up a scholarship fund in future years that allows any student from around the world to participate. Til' then, your school will be able to track our expedition, ask questions along the way, watch the interaction between schools collaborating, and watch video lesson blogs about their journey. Please participate and get involved with our program! Go to www.downtoearthexp.org to contact us!
Director(s): Michaela Precourt and Jon Mancuso
Producer(s): Jon Mancuso