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Water, Land, Life
WPC enewsletter

April 2011

Teacher Residency Provides In-Depth, Invigorating Approach to Education

Fallingwater's interior

Although Fallingwater is celebrating its 75th anniversary year, the house is still considered a monumental achievement of modern design. The lessons that it offers about sustainable architecture and living in harmony with nature are perhaps even more poignant today than in 1936, when the house was built.

Fallingwater invites teachers from all disciplines to apply for its week-long Teacher Residency program. Frank Lloyd Wright’s concept of organic architecture and his teaching method of “learning by doing” will inspire teachers and provoke critical thinking in the classroom.

Offered June 22 - June 29, 2011, the Teacher Residency features up-close, personal study of Fallingwater in its beautiful setting, the 5,100-acre Bear Run Nature Reserve. It invites educators to use design to explore the interrelationships between buildings and the natural environment. In addition, it examines how to respond to nature in art and design – and how to consider issues of green design and sustainability in order to conserve the environment.

Participants create interdisciplinary, problem-based learning activities that bring the inspiration of Fallingwater into the classroom. “Cross-disciplinary learning can only be fostered if instructors have interdisciplinary experiences to teach from,” said Roy Young, curator of education at Fallingwater. “This resident program allows teaching professionals to return to the classroom with unique insights and unforgettable, in-depth experiences that will inform their teaching pedagogy.”

Former program participant Ron Frenzen said, “I now have a better understanding of how architecture education can be utilized to enhance instruction and learning. The interdisciplinary inclusion is now a consistent consideration for me.”

Applications to the program, which costs $700 and includes room and board, are due April 16. The Fallingwater Teacher Residency provides Continuing Professional Education (Act 48) credits for teachers in Pennsylvania districts.

More information and application instructions are available at Fallingwater.org/87 or by contacting Jennifer Hiebert, at jhiebert@paconserve.org or 724-329-7826.

 Water, Land, Life  | Western Pennsylvania Conservancy | Fallingwater