Wenatchee Naturalists who are teachers apply what they have learned within their classrooms. Teachers earn a 20+ hour service pin by introducing east-side Cascade Mountains geography, plants, animals, & ecosystems with their students. Read some of their stories.
Sally Knipfer: 7th grade science
20+ hours: Sally Knipfer: 7th grade science teacher, Pioneer Middle School, Wenatchee School District. Designed and led a field-based unit so 30 students could learn to collect scientific data in the field, and what living and non-living factors can be found in the ecosystem at Saddle Rock. The class spent one day at Wenatchee River Institute learning how to gather data about plants, animals, weather, and soils, prior to designing and conducting their own fieldwork. 2013-2014 school year.
The Wenatchee Naturalist course gave me confidence to take students outside,” and the value of collaborating with people who are passionate about our community and shrub-steppe ecosystems. – Sally Knipfer
Joan Adams, 7th grade science teacher
20+ hours: Joan Adams, 7th grade science teacher at Icicle River Middle School, Leavenworth. Led her students in a project to renovate the school’s native plant garden by weeding non-natives, thinning and trimming existing native plants, applying mulch to suppress weeks, and installing permanent plant markers with scientific and common names for 40 species in the garden. April-Oct, 2013
Deb Noble, teacher at Sunnyslope Elementary School
20+ hours: Deb Noble, teacher at Sunnyslope Elementary School, Wenatchee, WA., 1998-2015. With the help of community educators, Deb designed and taught new lessons in the school garden with students/parents about native pollinators, their role in the vegetable seed production, and use of insects, both beneficial and harmful, as part of the garden as habitat.
Hana Butler- Wenatchee School District Tech Center
50+ hours: Hana Butler. Used the Wenatchee Naturalist curricula as a spring-board to design and teach a year-long, field-based natural resources high school class, with a 3-week summer program, for the regional technical learning center, serving students 16-20 years old.. Students to earn credit while engaging with relevant, meaningful projects that help enhance and sustain our natural resources. 2013-present.
I have found that many of my students don’t know what the word “naturalist” means or they associate it with a ‘hobby’ and people who are kind of hippies or ‘dorky.’ My work is creating programming that engages youth in hands-on interactions with their community and environment in order to foster a sense of belonging, stewardship and a desire for life-long learning. – Hana Butler
Alison Haug, 5th grade teacher
“As far as applying the Naturalist Class, I definitely feel that it has made me a much more well-rounded teacher of 5th grade science.
I feel like I have more ability to modify my lessons if needed and have a better understanding of the Next Generation standards because I have a better understanding of how nature and systems within nature operate. Fifth grade also has a huge emphasis on the impact man has on his surrounding environment and the field trips that we went on made that part of their focus. So, whether I’m teaching kids science or out building trail for Evergreen, I’m using a lot of what Susan and other experts have taught me. – Alison Haug
Helen Osborne, 6th grade teacher
80 hours: Helen Osborne, 6th grade teacher, Clovis Point Intermediate School, Eastmont School District. Planned, sought funding, organized, collected hands-on materials, invited guest experts wrote lessons, and taught a 4-day environmental education week, focusing on learning about fish, raptors, deer and other wildlife; rocks, plants, forests and forest fires.
Beth Neff, 7th grade teacher
10 hours: Beth Neff, 7th grade teacher, Clovis Point Intermediate School, Eastmont School District. Prepared and presented hands-on lessons about native animal life in North Central Washington
Kristen Bates, NCESD science specialist
100+ hours: Kristen Bates, participated as a citizen scientists on rare plant monitoring at Camas Meadow and bat surveys in Moses Coulee. She designed and implemented a high school photo monitoring project in partnership with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife in Okanogan County. Fall, 2012-present.
Matt Honor, Wenatchee Valley College Adult Basic Education teacher
Matt used the theme of east-side Cascade Mountain wildfire ecology, and took his class to the community Mega-Fires presentation at the Performing Arts Center. In his free time, Matt is teaching himself to identify edible mushrooms and sharing this knowledge with his friends.
Jan Woodley (retired teacher), substitute elementary teacher, Lewis & Clark Elementary
While serving as a substitute teacher, created and taught integrated art & science lessons about native shrub & tree species.
Nancy Navarro-Ortiz – 20+ Hour Service Pin
1st Grade teacher, Lewis & Clark Elementary, Wenatchee
- Applies Wenatchee Naturalist course concepts about local native plants to her teaching of the “Life Cycle of Plants” science unit.
- Annually guides her student on the Jacobson Preserve as they learn about native animals and plants during their science field experience.
Adelita Solis – 20+ Hours Service Pin
1st Grade Teacher, Lewis and Clark Elementary, Wenatchee
- Applies what she learned in the Wenatchee Naturalist course to teaching her students about the native plants and animals in Wenatchee Foothills.
- Annually leads her students on their science field experience to the CDLT Jacobson Preserve.
- Celebrates seeing her students’ enthusiasm & their deepen learning as they make connections about the science they learned in class to their outdoor experiences.
Daniz Lopez, 2nd Grade Teacher – 20+ Hours Service Pin
Lewis and Clark Elementary, Wenatchee
- Applies Wenatchee Naturalist course concepts to her teaching as she prepared her students for their geology/landforms/soils science field experience.
- Devotes extra time to preparing her students to learn science concepts taught in the field
Cindelia delaMora – 20+ Hours Service Pin
3rd grade teacher, Lewis & Clark Elementary, Wenatchee
Class of Fall 2012
- Intentionally applies Wenatchee Naturalist course ideas and resources to her own teaching.
- Daily, nurtures her students’ excitement for exploring nature outside of school.
- Bridges student learning by connecting field experiences to science concepts.
- Cindelia leads her students at Leavenworth Salmonfest each fall.
Graham Stansbery – 20+ Hours Service Pin
Science teacher, Wenatchee High School
- Applied Wenatchee Naturalist course concepts to develop new curricula for high school science courses including Advance Placement Environmental Science.
- Designed field activities to complement classroom learning.
Tina Holm, Science Teacher – 20+ Hours Service Pin
Eastmont Jr. High School
Class of Fall 2016
Incorporated local flora and fauna into Ecology science unit. Planned and taught an end-of-year fire ecology unit that culminated in a post-fire recovery study field trip to the Wenatchee foothills for 28 students. Led nature-journaling & photo monitoring during a 3-mile hike on a super hot day.
Joanne Roberts, Teacher – 20+ Hours Service Pin
Adjunct instructor, Transitional Studies Department, Wenatchee Valley College.
Used place-based concepts learned in the Wenatchee Naturalist class to design personalize curricula to best suit adult language learners. Examples include:
- Students used the local map of ice age flood map to visit a site, take a selfie photo, and write about their experience. Many students took their families along.
- Students participated on a sustainability walk on campus and wrote about applying sustainability to their own lives
- Students participated on a tree identification walk on campus to learn about native conifers.
Ariahna Jones – 20+ Hour Service Pin
Teacher for Outdoor Recreation Management AA Degree Program Wenatchee Valley College
- Applied “Sense of Place” knowledge and journaling techniques learned in the Wenatchee Naturalist course on every outing with students and with Outdoor Club members.
- Strives to foster students’ connection to their local ecosystems, growing understanding, appreciation, and the ethic of stewardship.