Upper Housatonic Valley Experience

The mission of the Upper Housatonic Valley Experience includes exposing our youth to the rich heritage of our region. Once they learn about and understand the history that makes us what we are today, they’ll be better qualified to contribute to the future prosperity and continued economic success of our region. We hope to foster a passion for continuing our region’s unique legacy.

This effort is sponsored by UHVNHA in conjunction with the Berkshire Chamber of Commerce, MCLA, BCC and local business.

Teachers from the region will spend one week early in the summer under the guidance of MCLA. During this week they will develop a curriculum for their students to educate them on the rich heritage of our region. They will visit local heritage sites, experience the river itself, and tour local industries that are important to our economic success. These teachers will then bring their curriculum to into their classrooms and enhance the students educational experience by touring local businesses and heritage sites to as they learn about our heritage.


The Upper Housatonic Valley Experience is an intense, condensed immersion program in the region‘s history, culture, environment and economy. This annual, Masters-lavel for-credit summer class develops curricula for area schools, classroom teaching materials and funding opportunities for field trips and student outings during the school year.


The Upper Housatonic Valley Experience: Summer 2013 – An Overview of the Historical, Industrial, Cultural & Environmental Influences of the Region

Sponsored by the Upper Housatonic Valley National Heritage Area, Inc. in cooperation with the Berkshire Chamber of Commerce, Berkshire Community College, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, the Berkshire County Regional Employment Board and the Berkshire STEM Pipeline.

This is a three (3) Credit Graduate Course offered through Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.

What: The Upper Housatonic River Valley Experience (Course Number: ENVE 651 OR HSTE 601) is designed for Berkshire County and northwestern Connecticut middle/ high school teachers of History, Social Studies, English, Science, Business, and Industrial Technology.

When: It will be held 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. June 24 through June 28 (with one extended day TBA).

Where: Pittsfield Intermodal Center and various sites within the heritage area.

Highlights:

  • This three-credit graduate course introduces and integrates various aspects of the heritage of the Upper Housatonic River Valley; the economic and industrial history of the valley, the ecology of the river throughout that history, the symbiotic relationship between that history and ecology, and the social and cultural aspects.
  • Instructors, from MCLA and Berkshire Community College, will assist students in designing projects that will infuse this information into their classrooms while meeting state standards.
  • Field trips to local cultural, environmental, and business sites and presentations by guest lecturers will be a major portion of the course.
  • Participants will review their current curricula and develop standard-based lessons related to the Upper Housatonic River Valley content that integrate contextual applications and motivational instructional strategies.
  • Individuals, school-based and/or content-based teams will develop written lesson plans suitable for dissemination.

Take a look at some of the projects created in 2012

Registration details

  • Course cost upon registration is $900.
  • A stipend that covers your cost of registration will be provided to participants who successfully complete the course.
  • Enrollment is capped at 16 participants, so register early.
  • Deadline for registration is June 1 – with 3 slots held for Conn. teachers until May 1.

Funding is available from the Upper Housatonic National Heritage Area to support the cost of transportation for follow up student field trips; details available during course.

Download the brochure

For registration assistance, contact Lisa Milanesi, Assistant Registrar at 413.662.5216 or Lisa.Milanesi@mcla.edu

INTENDED FOR: Berkshire County and Northwestern Connecticut middle/high school teachers of history, social studies, English, science, business and industrial technology. All welcome – the course content can be applied to any river watershed area. The course will be TEAM-TAUGHT by MCLA and BCC teachers.
Program Coordinator: Julie Hannum – jhannum@berkshirecc.edu .

DESCRIPTION: Introduces and integrates various aspects of the heritage of the Upper Housatonic River Valley – the social, cultural, economic and industrial history of the valley, the ecology of the river throughout that history, and the symbiotic relationship between that history and ecology. Instructors will assist students in designing projects that will infuse this information into their classrooms while meeting state standards. Field trips to local cultural, environmental, and business sites and presentations by guest lecturers will be a major portion of the course.

Participants will review their current curricula and develop standards-based lessons related to the Upper Housatonic River Valley content that integrate contextual applications and motivational instructional strategies. Individuals, school-based and/or content-based teams will develop written lesson plans suitable for dissemination. Final projects will be presented to the class and a wider audience at the last class meeting in August, date to be determined shortly.

More information and registration form can be downloaded off the Web site: http://www.mcla.edu/About_MCLA/uhrve/

*Note: Funding is available from the Upper Housatonic National Heritage Area toward the cost of transportation for follow up student field trips; details available during course. Download the reimbursement request here.


For Teachers:

We’d like to help your students to experience our heritage first-hand! The Upper Housatonic Valley National Heritage Area may be able to provide funding support for your field trip transportation costs. To find out if you qualify for transportation funding, download our Transportation Cost Reimbursement form and criteria.

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