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Teaching in an Age of Climate Consequences

November 10, 2016 - November 12, 2016

Teaching in an Age of Climate Consequences
A Faculty Learning Community
Inaugural Retreat at the Whidbey Institute

November 10–12, 2016

In recent years, the Curriculum for the Bioregion initiative and Whidbey Institute have hosted a series of gatherings on “Sustainability and Contemplative Practice” where educators have explored how pedagogies of reflection and contemplation can help us and our students respond creatively to global ecological crises.

In a new chapter of this work, Curriculum for the Bioregion and Whidbey Institute initiative, the Cascadia Climate Collaborative, are forming a faculty learning community with the theme, “Teaching in an Age of Climate Consequences.”  Welcoming faculty from across the disciplines, we will explore how, together with our students, we might navigate the complex emotional and ethical issues presented by the climate crisis.

Inaugural Retreat: November 10-12, 2016 at Whidbey Institute

This three-day gathering will convene Thursday evening, November 10 at 5 p.m. through mid-afternoon on Saturday, November 12th at the Whidbey Institute. This meeting will create an opportunity for us to pause, reflect, and deepen our teaching practices in a supportive community. Through a mix of plenary and concurrent sessions, as well as time to engage in contemplative practices, we will: 

  • Reflect on our work as teachers and mentors in this hinge point in history
  • Explore various reflective and contemplative practices that might help students (and ourselves) handle the emotional and psychological complexity of climate issues
  • Examine the questions of morality and justice that the climate crisis raises, and ways to weave these questions into studies of climate change
  • Share assignments and teaching activities we are already using
  • Explore strategies for co-inquiring with our students about their responses to these larger questions
  • Plan for ways to continue to support one another as a professional community through the coming academic year.

Retreat Particulars

The gathering will be held at the Whidbey Institute at Chinook, which is located a few minutes’ drive from Clinton, Washington on Whidbey Island.

We will formally begin at 5 p.m. on Thursday, November 10th, but there will be optional activities on the Whidbey Institute land earlier on Thursday afternoon. We will conclude after lunch on Saturday afternoon; you can plan to be on your way home by about 3 p.m. Lodging is available both at the Whidbey Institute and at the nearby retreat center, Aldermarsh. We will be treated to delicious organic meals prepared by Whidbey Institute’s Chef, Christyn Johnson.

Registration Costs 

  • The standard registration fee for the conference including all meals (Thursday dinner through Saturday lunch) and on-site lodging totals to $300.  
  • For commuters, the registration fee for the conference, including meals, but not on-site lodging, totals to $200
  • A scholarship registration may be requested from Jean at or call 360.867.6608 for a total of $150, that includes meals and lodging.

Click the Register Now button above and you can reserve a space in the retreat. To complete your registration we request a down-payment of $100; it is possible to complete your registration without a down-payment when selecting payment by Purchase Order.

About Curriculum for the Bioregion

Established as an initiative of the Washington Center at The Evergreen State College in 2004, Curriculum for the Bioregion’s mission  is “to prepare college and university students to live in a world where questions of sustainability—the complex issues of environmental quality, community wellbeing, and environmental justice—are paramount.”  To that end, the initiative creates and supports a variety of faculty learning communities as they build sustainability concepts and place-based learning into a broad array of courses and disciplines. Curriculum for the Bioregion is funded entirely by grants and donations.

About The Whidbey Institute

The Whidbey Institute is home to the bold seekers of positive change. Our work nurtures and connects people doing uncommon work for the common good. Woven throughout our work is the spirit of the 100 acres of northwest woodland and historic farmstead, which hold and energize everything that happens here.

Among 100 secluded historic acres of forest on Whidbey Island, Whidbey Institute at Chinook facilitates programs and events that inspire practical and lasting changes in the areas of leadership transformation, community vitality, and sustainable action. The Whidbey Institute is a place where people connect deeply to the natural world and to each other, renew their life energy, and engage in deep conversation and learning to imagine and create an abundant, sustainable, and life-affirming future.

The “Teaching in and Age of Climate Consequences” planning team for this gathering

Marie Eaton (Western Washington University), Larry Daloz and Kate Davies (Whidbey Institute), Abigail Lynam (Cascadia College), and Jean MacGregor (Curriculum for the Bioregion).


November 10, 2016
November 12, 2016