Justin Black - Woodwork, Outdoor Pursuits, Gardening and Community Building Teacher
I grew up in St. John’s, Newfoundland where I enjoyed the beautiful rugged landscape. I always had a passion for activity, especially outdoor play in our neighbourhood. I played any sport or activity I could get my hands on. This passion led me to choose a bachelor of physical education at Memorial University. There I learned about how children physically and mentally develop and was also made aware of barriers to health and childhood learning. I was also inspired by Silken Laumann’s book called “Child’s Play” which centered my focus on children playing with children, and children being outside to learn at their own pace.
Some of my most exciting teaching moments have involved being outside. When teaching with the Sea to Sky Outdoor School in Gibsons, I had the opportunity to captain adventure groups in voyageur canoes, lead forest games, facilitate outdoor classrooms and guided hiking groups. As a physical education teacher in St. John’s, Newfoundland we built winter shelters, skied the school grounds and played silly games in the snow. During my time as a elementary school teacher at the Vancouver Waldorf School, our class construction project was to build an adobe brick play kitchen for the early childhood centre. We spent lots of time outside mixing mud, weighing the ingredients, forming the bricks and finally building our kitchen. I’m very much looking forward to more adventures with Hand-In-Hand Early Years Nature Education Program.
I have had the pleasure to move to BC with my wife Carla who is from from the Comox Valley, and we have recently welcomed our son, Theo into our lives. When I’m not working, I love to grow food, play soccer and work on projects with other people.