Trailblazer Teachers

Screen Shot 2014-01-13 at 10.42.37 PMMichael Hershiser, Grades 5 and 6
Prairie Crossing Charter School, Prairie Crossing School District, Illinois

Antioch University New England alum, Michael Hirshiser’s students examine the food system and its impacts on the environment, learn about water resources and conservation, study sustainability and their own environmental impact, and explore local habitats and ecosystems through outdoor field studies. Students engage in research and problem-solving around real-world environmental issues, such as stormwater runoff and combined sewer overflow. When they discovered the effect of runoff on their community, Michael helped the students formulate a plan to raise money to purchase rain gutters and barrels while at the same time helping others to limit their runoff. They raised just over $3000 through the sale of painted rainbarrels, and the school board matched the funds. Students in Michael’s food system unit participate in sustainable food production on campus and eat local, healthy options. He created backpack lessons to help other teachers use the outdoors as a classroom as well. Through his work, he aims to help students realize the interconnectedness of life and how their own choices impact the greater world.

Check out Michael and other USGBC Trailblazer Teachers here:

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2 comments
  1. Brian Williams said:

    I’m the principal of the Sustainability Academy in Burlington, Vermont. As far as we know we are the first public elementary school in the nation dedicated to EfS. Over the past three years one of the highlights has been our schoolyard transformation where we are in the process of turning our inner city campus into a welcoming and thoughtful center for our neighborhood. Is this something you might be interested in learning more about? How do I get involved/submit? Best Brian Williams

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