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OLNI Completes First Grant Cycle

The Outdoor Learning Network Initiative (OLNI) completed its first grant cycle in July of 2021.

OLNI, founded in the fall of 2019, is a collaborative partnership between the school districts of Conestoga Valley, Ephrata Area, and Columbia Borough in addition to the Lancaster County Conservation District, Stroud Water Research Center, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, and Millersville University. Educators from each entity participated in environmental literacy events that can be implemented in classrooms at every level.

This summer, the group met for two weeks – one week in June and one week in July. Teachers from each of the three school districts participated in a wide range of environmental literacy learning events and projects that are scalable from the elementary classrooms all the way to high school classes. From determining the health of a stream via chemical water testing to an accounting of macro invertebrates (bugs in the water) to computer tools that delineate watersheds and even augmented reality stream tables, educators had a wide range of educational options from which to choose during the sessions.

Teachers were also given time to work collaboratively to develop systemic environmental literacy learning to enhance what is already accomplished in the schools.

The grant was funded by the Pisces Foundation, Chesapeake Bay Trust, Chesapeake Bay Office of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Chesapeake Bay Funders Network.

Click here for several photos galleries from the weeklong sessions!