Our Biodynamic Education Program brings biodynamic insights and practices into the landscape of the food and farming movement.
This fall at the 2014 Biodynamic Conference, we celebrated the graduation of eleven apprentices from the North American Biodynamic Apprenticeship Program (NABDAP). The program, which combines two years of structured on-farm training and mentoring with classroom study in biodynamics and an independent project, began in 2009. NABDAP now has forty-seven participating mentor farms across North America, forty enrolled apprentices, and twenty-two graduates.
The North American Biodynamic Apprenticeship Program (NABDAP) helps aspiring farmers develop the skills and knowledge they need to build successful organic and biodynamic farms. The program combines:
Apprentices benefit from a comprehensive training curriculum, carefully selected mentor farms, and access to networking, support, and educational resources. Upon completion of their training, apprentices are awarded a certificate in biodynamic farming from the Biodynamic Association.
Our scholarship fund helps farmers, apprentices, gardeners and others with financial need to learn about and develop their skills in biodynamics—and connect to the biodynamic community—through educational opportunities.
Scholarships are available for the biennial North American Biodynamic Conference, other events organized by the Biodynamic Association, biodynamic courses and workshops at participating education centers, and advising. Launched in 2010, the Biodynamic Scholarship Fund has awarded over $130,000 in scholarships to more than 600 individuals to date.
"The two-week winter intensive was an incredibly rich and transformative experience. I was intellectually, spiritually, and socially nourished and left feeling refreshed and ready to begin the last year of my apprenticeship with new perspectives."
— Deanna Perlman
Scholarship Recipient and NABDAP Apprentice
Live, interactive biodynamic webinars and online courses allow farmers, gardeners and others interested in biodynamics to learn from anywhere in the world. Our distance-based learning platform combines video meeting technology and web-based forums to share the wisdom of leading biodynamic educators in a dynamic and interactive format. Recordings are also available after the live events.
Peer learning and sharing is an important anchor or our educational work. Ongoing learning communities supported by the Biodynamic Assocation include Farm-Based Educators Inspired by Anthroposophy, the Biodynamic Educators Collaborative, and regional biodynamic groups, along with peer learning for participants in our online courses and apprentices and mentor farmers in our North American Biodynamic Apprenticeship Program.
We also host the Biodynamic Community Facebook group for discussion and networking.
The Biodynamic Educators Collaborative supports the development of biodynamic education in North America by providing a forum for peer-to-peer learning, sharing and professional development. It is a coming together of peers, a way to collaborate and share, identify and nurture best practices, and encourage a deepening and cross-fertilization of philosophy, principles and practices among biodynamic educators. Anyone who is working to bring an understanding of biodynamics to others—workshop leaders, advisors and consultants, farmers and mentor farmers, lecturers, authors and conveners, as well as those who participate in peer-to-peer, farmer-to-farmer learning and sharing—is invited to join.
Since launching the collaborative in 2012, we have held two educators gatherings at our biennial conferences, several interactive phone calls, and initiated an online learning community.