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Overview: Texas Nature Project's curriculum is designed to encourage students to venture beyond the comfort of their chosen major, make the important connections that exist between diverse areas of study, and apply the lessons of the classroom to their lives in significant and meaningful ways. On the traditional campus students spend between ten and fifteen hours a week engaged in faculty-directed learning experiences. Our students can expect to spend a minimum of forty-five hours each week engaged in learning activities with our faculty. Our faculty and staff take great pride in being actively engaged in learning with students both inside and outside of the classroom. Whether students are listening to a lecture or sitting around a campfire socializing, every aspect of their lives is guided by high expectations and every waking moment is viewed as a learning opportunity. Since the college experience should rightly prepare students for life, we go to great lengths to help our students apply the lessons of the classroom in both their personal and public lives. The most fundamental aspects of our curriculum are equivalent in time, content, and rigor to a full-time, upper division course load in an accredited institution of higher learning in the state of Texas. Our curriculum includes the following important components:
Students live with and work under a dedicated staff of professional educators. Enrollment is maintained at twenty-four students each semester. This limited enrollment makes it possible for students and staff to create the kinds of relationships that will support not only collective and individual achievements, but humane and sustainable societies.
Programs: Specific programs include community outreach, tree planting, indigenous and vegetable gardening, native wildlife identification and census, basic orienteering, observation journaling and drawing, planning and preparation of community meals, resource analysis seminars, weekly Socrates’ Theater on leadership, and community design.
Skills: Texas Nature Project students acquire skills and abilities such as critical thinking, conservation, conflict resolution, creative problem-solving, wildlife identification and care, alternative building, the basic principles of ecology, sustainable agriculture and forestry, community development, leadership, and value clarification. Even more significantly, students leave our program with a commitment to the values that bring meaning to life: love, peace, truth, justice, education, compassion, mercy, diversity, tolerance, hope, family, friendship, and community.
Active Learning: Texas Nature Project offers a unique model for learning because participants are actively engaged in their education. Students can expect to make new and exciting discoveries every day, whether they are assisting with the creation of wetlands, identifying plant life and rock formations, interacting with wildlife, watching a movie, reading a poem, enjoying the night sky, listening to music, preparing a meal, shopping in town, sitting around a campfire, climbing a tree, or even riding one of the North Point Ranch four-wheelers or cherished Kawasaki Mules. This type of learning is ongoing, connected, and relevant to each student’s individual life, academic major, and chosen career path.
Interdisciplinary Studies: The Texas Nature Project’s curriculum is fully integrated and interdisciplinary, which is one of the most unique aspects of the Texas Nature Project. The course work appeals to a variety of college students. For example, business majors can directly connect local economies and practices, indigenous climatology, geology and biology, and the cost and time of packing and transportation involved in end product consumer goods, with marketing, sales and employment practices. Science majors and future medical professionals come to understand the relationship between our actions and our health. Writers and performing arts majors learn to not only identify natural materials in their creations but experience first-hand the wonders of the natural world that have inspired the most important artistic achievements throughout history.This type of interdisciplinary learning opens doors to connections between diverse areas of study. It becomes easier for students to understand how their studies influence their choices, and how their choices impact the environment. Today’s youth will be prepared to resolve the urgent conflicts and challenges confronting their generation when they are able to comprehend the connection between what they learn and how they live.
Guest Visits: Texas Nature Texas Nature Project will be happy to schedule a tour of Northpoint Ranch for interested students and their parents. You may schedule a tour by writing us at firstname.lastname@example.org
|© 2007 Texas Nature Project | Northpoint Ranch, 3226 US Hwy 87 South, P.O. Box 300, Mason, TX 76856|
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