Michele Forbes is a passionate agent for change. An experienced educator of four decades, it was the work of Dr Rudolf Steiner which first inspired her thirty-year quest to understand the connection between humans and nature, and to give this form and expression in the world today.
To meet the challenges of the 21st century, Michele feels that now more than ever, new forms of learning and community are vitally needed. Modern research shows the health, social and educational benefits that finding heartfelt connection with nature bring and she aims to foster this through Education Around Us.
Michele’s quest to research education, community and experience a living connection with the land has taken her to the Northern Territory (to work with special needs children), and also to a teaching role at the Alice Springs Steiner School.
In her later role of Principal at Nyikina Mangala school in the remote Kimberley, she collaboratively created a hybrid methodology that enlivened ‘two way’ learning for the students. Engaged through culture, the arts and community life, the students were happy to come to school where learning was fun and meaningful.
Michele has also worked in TAFE and secondary schools with disengaged youth, and with younger children and families in Family and Student Support. Her experiences confirmed increasing research that highlights the growing number of anxious children, stressed youth and parents who feel their learning differences and interests aren’t being considered or adequately met.
The work of Sir Ken Robinson, David Suzuki, Richard Louv’s ‘nature deficit disorder’ and Children and Nature Network, further reinforce the benefits and choice EAU can bring to home educators, families and communities in the world today.
Michele currently works as a consultant for teachers wanting to bring Indigenous studies into their classroom. She also acts as a mentor for teachers and an advocate for parents and children in Waldorf schools.