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					            Cooper Center for Environmental Learning
          “A University of Arizona and Tucson Unified School District Partnership”

                                              UA College of Education
                                              Department of Teaching,
                                             Learning, and Sociocultural
                                                       Studies


Dear Educators and Cooper Supporters,

The Cooper Center had a fantastic year in 2010-2011. We had contact with almost 5,000 students and
adults, the calendar was full with a waiting list, more middle schools and new schools visited us, and new
groups continue to contact us about rental use of the facility on the weekends. We started a new intern
leadership program through partnerships with Earth Corps, Southwest Conservation Corps (SCC), and
within the University of Arizona. Based on these accomplishments and others over the past three years, the
University of Arizona and Tucson Unified School District renewed their partnership for another three
years.

Educationally we now offer a different learning experience for students at each grade level who come to the
Cooper Center. Additionally, the Sunship III program for middle school students continues to expand;
Earthkeepers continues to attract schools from as far away as Phoenix and Nogales; and our partnerships
with National Optical Astronomy Observatories, TUSD Food Services, and other local groups are getting
stronger.

Our facilities saw some improvements as well. Thanks to Tucson Electric Power, all of our solar panels are
fully functioning and our electric bill was reduced. The Gates Pass Area Neighborhood Association and
TUSD have replaced our last dilapidated ramada, the UA Blue Chip Leadership Group removed buffelgrass
from the hillside behind the amphitheater, several middle school groups completed service projects at the
site to remove asphalt and buffelgrass from the wash areas; the SCC helped paint our picnic tables and,
along with Doug Siegel from Pima County Natural Resources, planted 23 trees and 20+ new cacti in areas
where buffelgrass was removed. A new EcoBlue Cube system was also installed in the boys’ urinals to
further reduce the use of water and harsh chemicals in the bathrooms, with help from the Central Arizona
Project.

There was also a tremendous response to our request for students and adults to bring reusable water bottles
to the site to reduce our waste stream. Thanks so much for your cooperation and we will continue to offer
these bottles for sale at the center. In addition, be on the look out for our new t-shirt design for the 2011-
2012 year.

The biggest change you will notice this year is that all groups attending Cooper will be paying a per student
fee. Just as a classroom needs supplies and good leadership to offer quality, hands-on, meaningful
educational experiences, so too does the Cooper Center. Although the UA and TUSD continue to support
the center, recent reductions in budgets have made it important that all the partners, including field trip
groups, help to support Cooper’s educational offerings and leadership. That being said, we never want
money to be a reason for not attending Cooper, so we will work with schools as needed to help with this
cost and with transportation costs as well.

Lastly, a heartfelt farewell to Mike Mayer (aka: Snake). Mike has led the Cooper Center in the first three
years of the UA/TUSD partnership and has decided to begin his retirement. He will still be involved in
some Cooper projects but not the day to day operations. The staff of the Cooper Center will continue down
the trail he has blazed for us, offering programs that challenge the mind and spark emotion.

Thanks again for all your support and we look forward to sharing the wonders of the Sonoran Desert with
you and your students.

Colin “Jackrabbit” Waite                                            Mo “Cactus Wren” Goodnow
Assistant Director                                                  Instructional Specialist

                                      Cooper Center for Environmental Learning
                  University of Arizona – College of Education - P.O. Box 210069 - Tucson, AZ 85721
                                            Email: Colin.Waite@tusd1.org
                        Phone: 520-743-7422; Fax: 520-743-7422 (Call First) or 520-621-7877
                                  http://www.tusd1.org/contents/depart/cooper/index.asp
                       Cooper Center for Environmental Learning
                     Program Descriptions & Registration 2011-2012

Sunship III (grades 7/8): This 2 night, 3 day earth education program, specifically designed
for middle school students, celebrates their transition into adolescence, focuses on increasing their
knowledge of four ecological concepts and helps them examine their perceptions and choices
regarding the earth and its life. The first part of the program takes place at school and helps
prepare them for their experiences. At the Cooper Center, they participate in activities to learn
more about the key ecological concepts and make choices in their use of energy and materials as
they write checks from an “account” with a limited supply of “solarians.” Back at home and
school they participate in a “Quest” that includes visiting new natural areas, interviewing
community members modeling positive environmental lifestyles, developing their own lifestyle
plan, and working with others on a community project.
(Please Note: Dates for this program are limited and several groups have already made a
commitment for the school year. You will be contacted if you have a confirmed date or are
on a wait list.)

       Program Dates: November/December
       Group Size: Maximum 40 students/session; Minimum 20 students/session
       Fee: $45/student
       Orientation (Wednesday, September 7th – 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.): This session
        is required for all Sunship III teachers. It will include a program overview, teacher roles,
        leading Sharing Circles, and managing the Quest. Professional Development credit for
        7.5 hours will be awarded through the University of Arizona. Snacks and beverages
        provided.

Earthkeepers (4th and 5th Graders Only): This 2 night, 3 day earth education program’s goal
is to increase student knowledge of four key ecological concepts (energy flow, cycling of matter,
interrelationships of living things, and change over time) and to deepen their feelings for the earth
through observation, discovery, solitude, and immersion activities. The program begins two
weeks before the visit when a map and letter arrive inviting the class to become Earthkeepers. At
the Earthkeepers Training Center (Cooper) they participate in a series of staff-led activities and
students earn two of four keys that unlock boxes that reveal the secrets to becoming an
Earthkeeper. Back at home and school the students earn the last two keys of the program by
pledging to use less energy, fewer materials, visiting new natural areas, and sharing their
knowledge and experiences with others (Special Note: The Dark Skies Rangers program is
offered on the first evening by National Optical Astronomy Observatory.)

       Program Dates: January, February, March
       Group Size: Maximum 60 students; Minimum 20 students
       Fee: TUSD Schools - $15/student; Other Schools - $30/student
       Orientation Session (Tuesday, September 27th: 4pm – 6:30pm for Earthkeepers &
        6:30 – 8:30pm for Dark Skies Rangers): This session is required of all first time
        Earthkeeper teachers and professional development credit will be earned through the
        University of Arizona & NOAO. Snacks and beverages provided.

Note: The Cooper Center may host a Professional Development workshop during the day
on 9/27 for teachers who have participated in Earthkeepers previously. This session would
focus on program follow through and how to help students earn their last two keys.
Traditional Overnight Experiences (K-8): Students spend the night at the Cooper Center
with classroom teachers and parent volunteers. The group arrives at approximately 10:00 a.m.
and departs the following morning between 9:00 and 10:00 a.m. There are staff led activities on
ecological concepts and sensory observation skills for grades 3-8, and a desert exploration and
desert animal presentation for grades K-2. Teacher/volunteer led learning center experiences take
place during the remainder of the day (see center choices on web site). The Dark Skies Rangers
program, provided by National Optical Astronomy Observatory, is available most evenings or the
classroom teacher may select other activities (please ask our staff for suggestions if needed).

       Program dates: September, October, March, April, May
       Group Size: Maximum 2 classes
       Fee: $3/student ($50 deposit for all spring field trips)
       Orientation: Thursday, September 8th or Thursday, January 5th (Spring Groups)
        4:00pm – 6:30pm for Cooper Orientation & 6:30pm – 8:30pm for Dark Skies
        Rangers. This orientation is required of all first time teachers to the Cooper Center
        and/or the Dark Skies Rangers program. It is recommended for others who may not be
        familiar with the recent changes to Cooper programming or want more details on Dark
        Skies Rangers lessons. Professional Development credit from the University of Arizona
        will be given for this session.

Traditional Full Day Experiences (K-8): Students spend the day at the Cooper Center with
classroom teachers and parent volunteers. The group arrives at approximately 10:00 a.m. and
departs in the afternoon between 4:00 and 5:00 p.m. There are staff led activities on ecological
concepts and sensory observation skills for grades 3-8, and a desert exploration and animal
presentation for grades K-2. Teacher/volunteer led learning center experiences take place during
the remainder of the day (see center choices on web site).

       Program dates: September, October, March, April, May
       Group Size: Maximum 2 classes
       Fee: $2/Student ($50 deposit for all spring field trips)
       Orientation: Saturday, September 10th, 9am – 11:30am or Thursday, January 5th
        (Spring Groups), 4:00pm – 6:30pm. This orientation is required of all first time
        teachers to the Cooper Center. Professional Development credit from the University of
        Arizona will be awarded.

Traditional Half Day Experiences (TUSD Grades K–2 Only): A limited number of these
experiences are available. Students participate in a discovery-oriented hike through the desert,
enjoy a picnic lunch, and learn about a specific animal of the Sonoran Desert. This experience
runs from approximately 10:00 am to 1:00 pm.

       Program dates: September, October, March, April, May
       Group Size: Maximum 2 classes
       Fee: $1/student ($50 deposit for all spring field trips)
       Orientation: Saturday, September 10th, 9am – 11:30am or Thursday, January 5th
        (Spring Groups), 4pm – 6:30pm. This orientation is required of all first time teachers
        to the Cooper Center. Professional Development credit from the University of Arizona
        will be awarded.
                                   Cooper Center for Environmental Learning
                                              Registration Form

       Program requests for Fall 2011 and Spring 2012 should be received by Friday, September 2, 2010.
                   Program requests after September 2 will be honored if dates are available.
                      Trip confirmations will be mailed starting the week of September 5.
                      Overnight field trips are given preference over Full Day & Half Day.

  Please complete each the sections below and return to the Cooper Center one of the following ways:
   Email: Colin.Waite@tusd1.org        Fax: 520-621-7877     TUSD Inter-Office Mail: Cooper Center
 Regular Mail: Cooper Center for Environmental Learning, UA-COE P.O. Box 210069, Tucson, AZ 85721

I Wish to Sign Up for a Cooper Class Trip and Understand:
    This experience is an integral part of my classroom curriculum.
    I must arrange for transportation (district-provided or private vehicles) and adult supervision.
    If I have not previously done so, I must attend an orientation session as a prerequisite for bringing my class to
       the Cooper Center.
    I understand that no more than 2 classes may sign up for one Cooper Center field experience.
    I understand that all spring field trips are required to make a $50 deposit to hold their field trip date.

                                          Section I: General Information

SCHOOL NAME and DISTRICT:_________________________________________________________________

SCHOOL ADDRESS:___________________________________________________________________________

1ST TEACHER NAME (first and last) :_________________________________________ GRADE:___________

EMAIL ADDRESS:_________________________________PHONE #:_______________#STUDENTS:_______

2nd TEACHER NAME (first and last) :________________________________________ GRADE:___________

EMAIL ADDRESS:_________________________________PHONE #:_______________#STUDENTS:_______

 *********************************************************************************************
                                        Section II: Choose Your Experience
   (Visit our website at http://www.tusd1.org/contents/depart/cooper/index.asp for more details on the experiences)

    _____ Sunship III (3 day experience - grades 7/8, during November & December)
    (Program Fee: $45.00/student)

    _____ Earthkeepers Program (3 day experience - 4th and 5th graders only in January, February, March)
    (Program Fee: TUSD Schools - $15.00/student; Other Schools - $30/student)

    _____ Traditional Overnight Experience                   _____Traditional Full Day Experience)
    (Fee: $3.00/student; trips in Sept/Oct; Mar-May)         (Fee: $2.00/student; trips in Sept/Oct; Mar-May)

    _____ Traditional Half-Day Experience (TUSD Grades K-2 only; Fee: $1/student; trips in Sept/Oct; Mar-May)

         First Choice Month:                      Second Choice Month:                    Third Choice Month:

         ___________________                      __________________                       __________________
        On the line below indicate any dates during the month(s) you have chosen that you cannot be scheduled.
        Do not write in school holidays or testing dates since we have already taken them into consideration.

        _____________________________________________________________________________________

*******************************************************************************************

                        Section III: Evening Events for Overnight Groups and Earthkeepers

_____ Dark Skies Rangers Program presented by the National Optical Astronomy Observatory/Kitt Peak
      National Observatory. This evening program will provide time to look at the night sky with telescopes,
      discover strategies to keep our Tucson skies dark at night and save energy, and discover opportunities for
      you and your class to work with others around the world collecting data for GLOBE at Night. See the
      web site posting for details of this experience. There is no charge for this program.

        You must attend a Dark Skies/GLOBE at Night Orientation Session for your group to be eligible
        for this experience.

        _____ I am attending one of the Orientation Sessions listed below.           _____ I have already attended.

_____ The Cooper staff can also recommend evening resources in astronomy, story telling, night hikes, and
      other areas of interest you might have for your students. Please let us know how we can assist you in
      these experiences.

*******************************************************************************************
                             Section IV: Transportation Assistance

                 _____ If you anticipate needing help with bus funding, place an “x” on the line.

*******************************************************************************************
                               Section V: Program Orientation Sessions

        As noted above, all teachers who have not previously done so, and teachers who wish to participate in the
        Dark Skies Rangers Program, must attend an Orientation Session which takes place at the Cooper Center.
        The sessions are also recommended to teachers who wish to learn more about changes to Cooper’s
        program offerings. These sessions will be held on the dates and times below. The January session is only
        available for Spring, 2011 Overnight, Full Day, and Half Day trips. If emailing this document please
        place an “x” and bold your attending date. If sending through the mail, please circle your choice. All
        session attendees will receive salary increment/professional development credit through the University of
        Arizona.

        _____ Sunship III Orientation Session (Please bring a lunch; fruit and beverages provided.)
              Wednesday, September 7th, 2011: 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

        _____ Overnight/Full Day Groups’ Orientation Session
              Thursday, September 8th, 2011: 4:00 – 6:30 p.m.; Dark Skies 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

        _____ Full Day and Half Day Groups’ Orientation Session
              Saturday, September 10th, 2011: 9:00a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

        _____ Earthkeepers Orientation Session
              Tuesday, September 27th, 2011; 4:00 p.m – 6:30 p.m.; Dark Skies 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

        _____ Overnight, Full Day, Half Day Orientation Session – SPRING GROUPS ONLY
              Thursday, January 5th, 2012: 4:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.; Dark Skies 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

				
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