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Small House Education and Workshops for Sustainable Living

Effective Living > Small House Society > Resources

The Small House Movement has inspired the growth of many small house workshops and education opportunities. Below is a listing of education and workshop opportunities related to smaller and more sustainable living. Please contact us if you know of any other resources that should be added to this list.

  • Abundance-Ecovillage.com – “The idea for the Abundance EcoVillage Project was born of frustration and dissatisfaction with a way of living that is not healthy for the earth or it’s inhabitants. In a conventional home, subdivision, village, or city, the options provided for energy, water, waste handling, built environment, landscape, food, transportation, and a livelihood are grossly out of tune with the growing desire of many people to live as responsible citizens on the earth, in harmony with our planetary resources and our fellow creature inhabitants.”
  • Ancient Earth School of Natural Building – “Ancient Earth School of Natural Building is dedicated to experiential education through building sustainable structures with natural materials.”
  • Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) – A membership-based association of colleges and universities working to advance sustainability in higher education in the US and Canada.
  • BigGreenSummer.com – Big Green Summer grew out of an informal internship program started in 1998 at Surya Nagar Farm (Iowa and Hawaii – http://www.solarfarm.com) and in 2000 at Abundance Ecovillage (Iowa – http://www.abundance-ecovillage.com) that has served hundreds of students. This program was developed and directed by Big Green Summer founders Lonnie and Valerie Gamble.
  • Consumer Consequences – Presented by Public Radio, this interactive online “game” helps consumers calculate their environmental footprint. (20070916su1348)
  • Red Feather Development Group – “I was drawn to Red Feather, because of their hands-on approach. Efforts that emanate from the grass roots are often some of the most effective and creative.” – Robert Redford
  • Rocky Mountain Institute – “Cities and many of the people who run them are not always familiar with sustainability practices and methods for successful implementation. Issues such as energy consumption and conservation, climate change and its impacts, environmental performance, and whole-system thinking often represent new, unexplored territory. Without knowledgeable input and direction from reputable sources, tackling these issues can appear daunting. RMI can help shorten the distance from the present to the future.”
  • Root Systems Institute – Root Systems Institute (RSI) seeks to educate, empower, and inspire people to make sustainable choices that are in alignment with their inner purpose and which support the health of our communities and the planet.
  • SolarFarm.com – “Surya Nagar is Sanskrit for “Home of the Sun”, and the mission of Surya Nagar is to implement and teach how man can create a life based on solar energy. We operate a farm, offer internships, host visitors, and offer educational programs such permaculture design certificate courses.”
  • Solar Living Institute – “The mission of the Solar Living Institute is to promote sustainable living through inspirational environmental education.”
  • Studio 804 – “Studio 804 is a design/build program at the University of Kansas School of Architecture and Urban Design that provides a broad range of architectural services, typically resulting in a new residence. This studio is the final experience for 3rd year graduate students seeking a professional masters degree, although on occasion it does include graduating bachelors of Architecture students. During this final exercise, the students collaborate to bring a housing design to fruition that provides architectural solutions with an emphasis on affordable homes.”
  • Timber Framers Guild – There are many benefits to timber framing.
  • TinyHouseProject.org – “The Tiny House Project will work with artists to create a traveling exhibition of nine very small houses, using these structures as canvases to explore our collective relationship to the scale of the spaces we occupy, addressing the environmental, social, psychological and financial ramifications of the choices we make. The Tiny House Project will bring together a group of artists to help us explore how we, in America, live. Nine artists will create a neighborhood of tiny homes in order to ask some very interesting questions about the choices we make. Do our choices bring us joy? How do they shape our connections with the people around us? In what ways will our choices change the lives of future generations? The Tiny House Project is a public art experiment, and everyone is invited to participate.”
  • Tumbleweed Tiny Houses – Offering a variety of workshops on small house living.

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By Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson is a freelance writer and tech consultant in Iowa City. He is also the founder and Director of the ResourcesForLife.com website. Learn more at AboutGregJohnson.com