History

2006

At that time, Rodolfo Salgado Brenes, owner of Los Coyotes, had been collaborating with children in the Mata de Plátano and Rancho Redondo communities (Goicoechea, San José) for several years. From those initiatives, only the scholarship program continued.

 

The Ecological Committee of the José Cubero Muñoz School (Mata de Plátano, Goicoechea) reaches Los Coyotes, looking for a site to reforest with the Ecological Club, in celebration of Tree Day. After this experience that Mr. Salgado decides to change his approach and offer the possibility to nearby public schools of using the environmental resources in the reserve to enrich the learning process. This initiative is called "Open Classroom".

2007-2008

Los Coyotes opens its doors to three schools: Jose Cubero Muñoz, Filomena Blanco Mora (Ipís, Goicoechea) and La Isla (San Vicente, Moravia). Some teachers take advantage of the invitation from the reserve and with the support of a nature guide they begin to discover this protected area so close to their communities. That year, more than 2,000 elementary students visited the reserve.

2009

In 2009 only Jose Cubero Muñoz School demonstrate enough interest and support to the initiative, therefore the program continues only with this institution. Its principal, Gustavo Brade Salazar declares it institutional project and the name evolved to "Outdoor Classroom

 

The reserve adds staff trained in Environmental Education and together working protocols are defined and all elementary and preschool grades are involved.

In November, the program was presented to the teaching community during the "First National Encounter for the Exchange of Successful Experiences in Health, Environment and Sexuality Education" organized by the Ministry of Public Education.

2010

In 2010 the Emma Gamboa Experimental School (Sabanilla, Montes de Oca) joins the program and plannings are adapted to meet the requirements of Science education by inquiry, since both schools are part of the pilot project "Learning science doing science“.

That year the program is part of the lectures of the II Primary Congress, organized by the Faculty of Education of the University of Costa Rica in July and the XII National Congress of Science, Technology and Society, organized by CIENTEC in August. In addition, in December the program was chosen by the Department of Education in Health and Environment of MEP as a representative experience of Costa Rica to be included in the new UNESCO compendium of "Good Practices in Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in Biodiversity" .

2011

A small group of students from the José Fabio Garnier School (Rancho Redondo, Goicoechea) begin a pilot plan and join the students of the José Cubero Muñoz and Emma Gamboa Experimental School. On June 30, 2011 the program again represented MEP at the closing activity for Environment Month at the conference "Successful Experiences in Environmental Management", organized by the Ministry of Energy and Environment. 

2012

Every studen of every grade from José Cubero Muñoz, Laboratory Emma Gamboa and José Fabio Garnier schools participate in the program.

In January Dr. Eleonora Badilla Saxe, organizer of TEDxPuraVidaED meets the program and extends an invitation to include it within the conference cycle. The name changes to "Classroom in the forest" and for the first time is presented to the educational community at a national level. Later, in October it is presented at the National Congress of Conservation in Private Lands, organized by the Tropical Science Center.

2013

Following the program's presentation at TEDxPuraVidaED, Reserva Los Coyotes and “Aprender y Crecer”, a program by Price Charities, formed an alliance to train the teachers of some schools sponsored by “Aprender y Crecer” in the methodology of the "Classroom in the Forest". As a result, 82 teachers from 5 schools located in three different counties (Vásquez de Coronado, Tibás and Zapote) were trained to implement  the methodology designed by Los Coyotes with their students.

At the same time, Parque La Libertad and Los Juncos Cloud Forest take the first steps to replicate the program in Desamparados and Vásquez de Coronado counties. 

In addition, the production of a compendium of activities was completed, which compiles the activities used by the program to cover the contents of the thematic axis of Sciences "Humans form an integral part of nature" in an experiential way. Some of the activities are original creations of participating teachers or environmental educators, while others are adaptations of traditional games, proposals from national or foreign educational guides and materials found online.

2014

Parque La Libertad begins his pilot and Los Coyotes allies with the Municipality of Cartago to replicate the program in the Parque Ambiental Municipal Río Loro.  It also initiates relationships with the municipalities of Belén and Santa Ana and Tirimbina Biological Reserve in Sarapiquí, in order to take the program to these counties. In addition the program participated in the Reimagining Learning Challenge of the LEGO Foundation and ASHOKA, being selected as semifinalist.

2015 

Replicas by the Municipality of Cartago and Parque La Libertad keep working and new alliances are stablished with the Municipality of Belén and Tirimbina Biological Reserve. A new relationship iniatiates with Fudebiol, in Pérez Zeledón, to take the program to Las Quebradas Biological Center. In addition, the first training for teachers of Circuit 02 of the San José Norte Regional Direction (MEP) is held with the course "Classroom in the Forest: an experience in the school context »

The reserve also allies with Project WET Foundation, an international nonprofit water resources education program, located in Bozeman, Montana, U.S.A., whose goal is to provide scientifically accurate and educationally sound water resources education materials, training courses and networking services to organizations, governments and corporations for use in designing, developing and implementing their own localized Project WET programs. 

2016

Due to a restructuring of the organization, the program in Los Coyotes is paused. However, the municipalities and Biological Reserve Tirimbina continue to implement the methodology in their respective communities. An alliance with Coope Ande allows to take advantage of the initiative of Mini communal projects and with the support of the cooperative the first virtual course at the national level is launched in order to train teachers of different specialties and provide them with the necessary knowledge and strategies to be able to implement The methodology