Laura White and Antioch University New England Lauded at Annual Meeting

Laura White and Dori Drachman

2013 Teacher of the Year Laura White and Harris Center naturalist Dori Drachman, in front of their students’ exhibit on land use history in Stoddard.

The Harris Center honored two exemplary partners at our Annual Meeting on Sunday, October 20.  Laura White, 4th/5th grade teacher at James M. Faulkner Elementary School in Stoddard, was named as the Harris Center’s 2013 Teacher of the Year.  Laura worked with Harris Center naturalist Dori Drachman to teach New Hampshire history by investigating the land behind the school.  Students studied the cellar hole in their woods, read clues in stone walls to determine if the land was once pastured or farmed for crops, measured tree diameter to estimate the age of the forest, used historical maps to match modern places with older Stoddard landmarks, and examined the town’s 19th century agricultural census reports.  They then came up with their own hypotheses about historical land use.  Last year, they documented their work in a large display that was exhibited at the Stoddard Historical Society.  Congratulations, Laura!

The 2013 Laurie Bryan Partnership Award — honoring former Harris Center Executive Director Laurie Bryan’s achievements in working with community partners — was awarded to Antioch University New England (AUNE), in recognition of our 29 years of collaboration with common purpose.  The relationship between AUNE and the Harris Center dates back to 1974, when AUNE was looking for a field station for its Environmental Studies Department and a home for its “experiential learning” summer day camp (now the Harris Center’s beloved Wol’s Nest.)  In more recent years, the partnership has focused on internships: the Harris Center provides a myriad of environmental education and conservation opportunities and AUNE provides skilled, energetic interns in need of field experience.  Here’s to extending deepening our partnership for three more decades!