The Permaculture Classroom
Using Design Principals to build Community
The question is not how do we get more institutions to begin using Permaculture but rather how do we use Permaculture to begin shifting those institutions? Following the case study of the Hood River Middle School project, the evening will explore how do we begin to use design methodologies to build the resilient systems every community is looking for.
Michael Becker came to the classroom after a long bout with wandering. Traveling the world and working a wide variety of seasonal, educational and labor jobs has given him a broad picture view of how things work. Family life, a lovely wife and two children, led to a search for a slightly more stable platform to view the world from. Becoming a teacher seemed like the only reasonable endeavor. He has a BS in Geography and a Masters in Education, both from Portland State University, and is currently pursuing a PhD in Sustainability Science at Prescott College.
During his first year of teaching Michael took a Permaculture Design Course at the Bullock farm on Orcas Island. Ever since, he has pursued the use of gardens and design as a tool for increasing the hands-on on nature of what education can be. Real world context allows students to delve to deeper depths and more meaningful connections between themselves and the world around them. The Oregon Middle School Association named Mr. Becker the 2008 Teacher of the Year for his efforts in integrated and applied, science and math instruction. He currently directs the Food and Conservation Science (FACS) program at Hood River Middle School.