Solutions Oriented Learning Storylines: Fire for Secondary Teachers

During May 2021, 25 middle and high school educators from across Eastern and Central Washington attended a three-day online workshop, Solutions Oriented Learning Storylines: Fire for Secondary Educators, with Pacific Education Institute’s (PEI) FieldSTEM Coordinator Mike Nepean and PEI Faculty Michelle Townshend and Randy James.

Indian Painted Rocks pictograph documentation of challenging times some 250+ years prior to our visit.

To begin the workshop series, participants learned about the ClimeTime proviso and PEI’s storyline project. Participants discovered that fire can be a solution, how to analyze data and discussed, in small groups, the fire board and soil carbon models. Michelle walked the participants through the storylines to prepare them for their asynchronous storyline exploration.

The second session engaged participants in a virtual field experience to Indian Painted Rocks to examine first scientists’ observations and tour a wildfire site to see evidence of wildfire behavior. During the second half of the session participants were introduced to Dave James, Wildfire Resilience Plan Manage, from Avista Utilities. James shared Avista’s Wildfire Resiliency Plan and gave a perspective on wildfire as it relates to utilities and land management.

In the last session, participants engaged in a gallery walk of labs from the storylines on Flipgrid, which were created by other participants, to experiences the labs and provide feedback on the storyline’s activities. Educators were exposed to current wildfire statistics and real-world data that can be used for student learning. Educators then discussed three-dimensional science assessment and had small group planning time. After the workshop, a participant shared this sentiment, “I love the fire boards. I do want to look more into Indigenous strategies compared to Forest Service.” PEI will be publishing Solutions Oriented Learning Storylines: Fire on the PEI website and the ClimeTime Open Educational Resources (OER) portal in June 2021.

This trail heading northeast from Indian Painted Rocks Trailhead is slower to recover from wildfire six years prior. Additional phenomena indicates wildfire burned hotter here than other areas recovering faster.

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