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Volunteer educators sought for Audubon Four Mile Ranch program

Audubon Colorado is seeking volunteers for its Four Mile Ranch Environmental Education program.

To learn more about this opportunity, attend an informational session on Wednesday, Aug. 8, from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the East Tile Room at the Ross Aragon Community Center.

A short presentation and slideshow will describe a day’s work at Four Mile Ranch and the requirements for becoming a volunteer educator.

Since 2008, Audubon’s program has helped more than 2,500 local youth experience their local environment through science education and outdoor learning opportunities. Preliminary classroom sessions led by Audubon staff provide students with background in science concepts and prepare them for spending a day outdoors.

Field programs take place at the Hershey Four Mile Ranch north of Pagosa Springs, where trained volunteers lead elementary school students in hands-on activities and explorations. Small groups of children are accompanied by a volunteer educator for these school-day field trips, held in September and October.

Volunteer educators give young people the opportunity to explore their local environment and learn science directly from the natural world in a way that is not possible inside a school building. A thorough volunteer training program allows adult community members to expand their own knowledge and experience while helping the future leaders of our community build compassion and understanding of the natural world.

No previous teaching experience is required to volunteer — just a love of children and the outdoors. Free training and materials include an activities manual, adult-level natural history education, group management and child development information, program site orientation and outdoor safety protocols.

This year’s volunteer educator training takes place Aug. 28-29, and Sept. 5-6. Advance registration, attendance at all four sessions and a background check are required.

For more information, contact Audubon Colorado’s Southwest Regional Director Becky Gillette at 883-3066 or rgillette@audubon.org.

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