Category:SOP Curriculum

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School Overnight Program Curriculum


School Overnight Program Curriculum: A Blueprint for Stewardship

Program Goal 

To inspire action that arises from caring and informed relationships in one’s natural and cultural communities.

Program Outcomes  Stewards Will:
  • Explain how each of us is a part of a human and natural community.
  • Make caring and informed decisions.
  • Appreciate and express joy with direct, sensory experience with natural ecosystems.
  • Demonstrate that learning can happen everywhere.
  • Recognize the effects of behaviors on ecosystems and communities.
  • Use observable evidence to support conclusions.
  • Use wonder to ask investigable questions that inspire curiosity.
  • Practice creative and collaborative thinking to effectively solve problems in a group setting.
  • Identify and communicate about one’s own feelings and listen to those of others.
Instructors Will:
  • Provide direct experiences not easily available to students in their classrooms or school.
  • Use ongoing assessment to inform what learning experiences to provide students.
  • Value and encourage student sharing of cultural understandings of ecosystems and communities.
  • Use student words/voice to describe phenomena in nature.  Incorporate and reinforce scientific practices and vocabulary as the week progresses.
  • Provide equitable access to and culturally responsive instruction. 
  • Provide intentional opportunities for collaborative team building.


 STEWARDSHIP UNIT : Stewardship through the four pillars

Enduring Understanding

Humans can act to positively impact home communities and the environment.

Unit Objectives/
Knowledge & Skills

Explain how they can be a steward in their community

Identify one experience or skill from the week that can positively impact their community(s)


Assessment Examples

(What would provide evidence of learning?)

Essential Questions 

(What are the big ideas?)

  • Explain in your own words what a steward is and does?
  • What information, skills, actions, choices, and/or strategies will you share with family and friends in your community?
  • How do you take care of the ecosystems and communities that you are a part of?
  • What practices do you want to continue when you return home?
  • How will you embrace adventure, live/learn in community, help the environment, and/or connect with place back at school/home?
  • How can you share these practices with your home communities?



  • These two objectives are best woven into all lessons from each unit with one or all of the four pillars of stewardship:
  1. Embrace Adventure
  2. Living and Learning in Community
  3. Protecting the Environment
  4. Exploring Here and There.

Examples: A community agreement may have the pillar of Living and Learning in Community while an investigation may be about exploring here and there. E1T1 can be about Exploring Here and There and Protecting the Environment. Navigating to the Harbor can be Embracing adventure. Speaking up during a student discussion can be about Embracing adventure and Living and Learning in Community.



ECOSYSTEMS UNIT: Stewardship in the Context of Natural Systems

Enduring Understanding Ecosystems consist of interacting organisms and their physical environment and have many interdependent relationships. 
Unit Objectives/Knowledge & Skills Use evidence (sensory and/or measured) to model or explain how natural phenomena occur in multiple ecosystems. Identify the source of matter and energy for different organisms in an ecosystem. Describe multiple interdependent relationships between themselves and other elements of their ecosystems. 

Assessment Examples

(What would provide evidence of learning?)

  • Debates and four corners
  • Investigation process
  • Discussion, concentric circles
  • Annotated Student Drawing
  • Skits
  • Web of Life explanation

Essential Questions

(What are the big Ideas?)

  • What do you notice? What do you wonder? What does this remind you of?
  • What evidence do you observe with your senses?
  • What evidence supports your claim?
  • What does the presence/absence of ____ tell us?
  • If you were a ____, where would you find food in this ecosystem?
  • How does _____ obtain energy?
  • What inputs and outputs are observed in this system? What are inputs and outputs in other systems?
  • How does the energy of the Sun impact life?
  • What would you change about this ecosystem to make it healthier?
  • How does the interaction of __ and __ affect humans?
  • What is the difference between surviving and thriving?
  • What inputs and outputs are different for you and this organism?
  • What would be impacted if __ was removed from this system? If _____ was added?
Lessons/ Activities
*SOP Notes
  • Minimum one student-centered investigation completed by the end of the week.        As the year progresses, these will become student-led investigations.                           


COMMUNITIES UNIT: Stewardship in the Context of the Natural World

Enduring Understanding

There is a diversity of interconnected communities that people are part of, and by working together, we can have a positive impact on them.

Unit Objectives/
Knowledge & Skills

My Connection to the Natural World

Explain their personal connection within the natural world.

My Connection to Cultural Community

Explain their personal connection within a cultural community. 

 OurAction as a Community

Demonstrate the ability to communicate, problem solve, plan, and make decisions within a group.

Assessment Examples

(What would provide evidence of learning?)

Essential Questions 

(What are the big ideas?)

  • How is being alone outside different from being in a group?
  • Choose one word to describe your experience and explain.
  • In what ways did you feel connected to this ecosystem?
  • What did you see that you’ve seen in your neighborhood?
  • What did you observe with your senses?


  • What traditions do you and your family share?
  • What communities are you part of? What is your role?
  • What is a community? Why are they important?
  • Who are you connected to in your life and how does it impact you?
  • How do our cultures and histories impact how we interact?   
  • What strengths do you bring to a group?
  • How did (planning, communication, etc.) help you achieve your goal?
  • How are task and goal different and why are they important?
  • What did you learn this week that can be used at school and at home?
  • How and where can these skills benefit you in life?


SOP Notes

  • AIR and STS can fulfill multiple objectives depending on the focus of the session. 

This is an opportunity for students to engage across boundaries and see past their biases as they connect with theirs and others' humanities.

  • Community agreement started on Arrival Day
  • Team building done daily.