I'm a Naturalist / Educator with a passion for botany (edible / medicinal plants are my specialty), zoology (I'm an active member of an insect club with a special interest in dragonflies) and natural history writing. A longtime resident of Colchester, VT, I spent three years researching and writing A Field Guide to Colchester's Parks and Natural Areas, which included maps, interpretive trails and information on 10 noteworthy plant and animal species for each of the 13 parks. I'm now living in Milton, VT, where I've been identifying plant and animal species at Lake Arrowhead, the Bove Property, Milton Municipal Forest and other local natural areas.
I lead local edible / medicinal plants and/or dragonfly walks; offer show-and-tell natural history programs at nursing homes and rehab. centers; teach day camp (for children ages 6 and up); and teach "Edible, Medicinal and Useful Plants of the Northeast", a 10-part series featuring independent home study, field trips and hands-on herb preparations (like natural insect repellent, herbal teas, smudges and plant harvest and preservation).
For eight summers, I worked as Naturalist / Recreation Director for the State of VT at Lake Carmi (1 year) and Grand Isle State Park (7 years.) In 2009, due to budget constraints, the State did not hire any naturalists, so I started a day camp out of my home. I teach organic gardening and composting, lead nature walks, teach French and beginning ASL signs, natural arts and crafts and educational games. Since January 2013, I have been substitute teaching in Burlington (K-12), for which I've been fully vetted.
I enjoy teaching eager learners of all ages... and I'm eager to meet you. Laurie D. :-)
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