Unionville Elementary honors Shane Gibson

Shane Gibson thought it would be a regular day working with the classrooms at Unionville Elementary. As Sycamore’s Environmental Education Director, Shane works with classrooms throughout Unionville and at schools all over southern Indiana on all kinds of nature education, from watershed studies to growing native seeds to birdwatching and beyond.

When he walked into the school on Friday, January 31, Shane thought he’d be giving a simple presentation to the school about what inspired him to love nature, to help others connect with nature through education, and how he wrote the book Wake Up, Woods. Unionville does have a history of surprising Shane: they hosted Sycamore Land Trust day in 2017 when every class became a classroom member, and in 2018 they named the trail on the school campus Gibson Trail in his honor.

Still, Shane did not expect to see a reporter from the Herald-Times show up for his talk. The Unionville teachers, students, and parents had surprised Shane once again — this time with the announcement that they had bought every child in the school a copy of Wake Up, Woods and had raised $400 for Sycamore during their latest Sycamore Land Trust Day earlier that week. The story made the front page of The Herald-Times the next day.

It was an exciting day, and absolutely deserved! We’re lucky to have Shane on Team Sycamore, and he considers himself equally lucky to be a part of the wonderful Unionville family.

When we work together on caring for nature, it’s more than just a job. These relationships we build strengthen our connection to our community and our environment. Thanks to all who make this work possible!