by Megan Gerst Rocker
This winter, LearningLife short course participants can go around the world in a day--or two or three, if they wish.
February 24 kicks off Adventure Travel: Three Stories, a miniseries-style short course featuring speakers and instructors who travel to exotic parts of the world as an integral part of their lives and work.
The miniseries is a new format for LearningLife: the course as a whole is unified by a common theme, but each night of the course features a stand-alone topic and participants have the option of registering for one, two, or all three of the meetings. (See end of story for registration links to each meeting.)
Says LearningLife program director Lara Roy, "Depending on their schedules and/or interests, people can get a taste of a theme...or savor the whole experience."
The first session (February 24) features Aaron Doering (pictured), U of M associate professor and designer and founder of the GoNorth! Adventure Learning Series and the new Earthducation Series.
Doering, who has dogsledded and skied thousands of miles across the Arctic in order to educate students and bring attention to global climate change and sustainability, will showcase his adventure learning programs, which he began in 2004.
"As a former social studies teacher, I recognized early on that students and adults around the world needed an opportunity to learn about global climate change, sustainability, and the impact each individual is having on this issue," he says.
"During my morning run years ago, I had an epiphany: educators needed to tie real-world experiences to a curriculum that affords collaboration among learners in an online learning environment... thus, 'adventure learning' was born."
Since then, Doering has led online education programs from such locales as Russia, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Greenland, and Burkina Faso, Africa.
The amazing peaks of the Himalayas will be the destination on March 10, as longtime Star Tribune columnist Jim Klobuchar describes how he got his start in adventure travel, visiting such exotic locations as the Andes and the Himalayas.