Get to know our James Scholars – Heather Howard

Hello everyone! My name is Heather Howard and I am a junior studying Elementary Education at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. 

This year, I have had the pleasure to work with a fantastic group of people to compile resources for Sustainable World Collaborative. Additionally I also had the chance to present alongside the lead researchers at an honors brunch that we were invited to attend. This was a great opportunity and I hope to grow my own presentation skills and confidence to speak more about Sustainable World Collaborative to spread the word of our mission. 

From all of the resources that we have gathered, I have a couple of my own that I really love. The first one that I would like to highlight is Animal poems of the Iguazu/Animalaria del Iguazu. As a pre-service teacher with a love for teaching, I was overjoyed to find this book. The artwork is simply beautiful, and is very impactful with vibrant colors. With strong connections to sustainability, this book can be used in an overall lesson to link back to the need for sustainability and be a bridge into talking about topics such as deforestation and climate change. The part of this book that I love so much is how the poems are written in English and in Spanish. I have spent a little bit of time trying to focus my efforts to have more sources that can be used in a bilingual classroom, and I believe this book would work wonderfully in a Spanish and English dual language class! 

Although I am currently a pre-service teacher, I hope to bring the resources that my team and I have gathered into each placement that I have the privilege to teach in and bring sustainability into my cooperating teacher’s classroom as well.

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