The Power of Place An exploration, thought leadership campaign and book. Order the Book The Power of Place

The Power of Place

“Place: it’s where we’re from; it’s where we’re going. . . . It asks for our attention and care. If we pay attention, place has much to teach us.”

With this belief as a foundation, The Power of Place offers a comprehensive and compelling case for making communities the locus of learning for students of all ages and backgrounds.

Dispelling the notion that place-based education is an approach limited to those who can afford it, the authors describe how schools in diverse contexts urban and rural, public and private have adopted place-based programs as a way to better engage students and attain three important goals of education: student agency, equity, and community.

Place-Based Education (PBE) is an approach to education that takes advantage of geography to make learning authentic, meaningful and engaging for learners. PBE is defined as an immersive learning experience that “places students in local heritage, cultures, landscapes, opportunities and experiences–using these as a foundation for the study of language arts, mathematics, social studies, science and other subjects across the curriculum.” We hope you enjoy our multi-year campaign of developing school and community profiles, resources and our new guide to PBE “The Power of Place”.


What is Place-Based Education and Why Does it Matter?

 Place-Based Education

Quick Start Guide to Place-Based Professional

Slide READ Back to Top

Strategies and Considerations When Designing for Summer Learning

There are abundant summer learning opportunities. Alongside Katie Martin, we highlight some of the most compelling and interesting options.

What the Pandemic Taught Us

By: Casey O’Meara. Slate Valley Unified Union School District’s approach during pandemic teaching relies on flexibility, empathy, experiences as moments for learning, and essential content and skills, and is resulting in lasting change for the district.
Gary Funk and Haley Richardson

Gary Funk & Haley Richardson On Rural Teachers and Rural Schools

On this episode of the Getting Smart Podcast, Tom sits down with Gary Funk and Haley Richardson to talk about an innovative rural school network.
Citizen Schools

Connecting Classroom and Community: 7 Strategies to Try (even virtually)

By: Kyle Conley. As students return to learning this fall, this is the time to lean into the challenges of delivering deeper learning remotely. Here are seven strategies educators can try to build critical connections for students with their classrooms and communities.

Creating Connections Across Slate Valley for the Common Good

By: Casey O’Meara. The Slate Valley Unified Union School District applies community-focused experiential teaching and facilitation methods to better support deeper learning for its students.
Earth Day

We Can Never Repay The Earth, But We Can Try

This Earth Day, we're reflecting on our duty to the planet: to experience it to its fullest and to face the largest issue of our time head-on.

Slide LISTEN Back to Top

Getting Smart Podcast | Implementing Place-Based Education

The second podcast in our Place-Based Education campaign shares the perspectives of the teachers, leaders and learners at Teton Science Schools, with advice on how to implement PBE in your classroom, school, campus and community.

Learner-Centered Iowa BIG Propels Jemar Lee

Emily from the Getting Smart team interviews Jemar Lee, a former student from Iowa BIG, a place-based and learner-centered school in Cedar Rapids and a Next-Generation Learning Challenge and XQ Super School winner.

Podcast: Dan Condon on Eagle Rock School and PD Center

Today we talk to Dan Condon, the Associate Director of Professional at Eagle Rock School about community-connected project-based learning.

Podcast: Rachel Wigglesworth on Learning at Home

More than 36 million of about 50 million US students are learning remotely during the Coronavirus outbreak. But learning at home comes with challenges.

Getting Smart Podcast | Experiencing Place-Based Education at Teton Science Schools

I had the opportunity to spend two days in the beautiful Teton Mountain range experiencing my own place-based learning at Teton Science Schools. Join me on this "audio field trip" for your own place-based experience.

Podcast: Francisco Guajardo on the Language of Place

In this week’s podcast, Tom is speaking with Dr. Francisco Gaujardo. Francisco is a leading voice in bilingual, biliterate, and bicultural education and a noted expert in place-based education.