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BDA Online Learning Opportunities

The Individuality of the Farm

Six-Month Distance Learning Course with Cory Eichman 

Course in process. ​Registration now closed.

Are you a farmer or gardener interested in exploring the deeper aspects of the work you are doing? Biodynamics offers a unique way to live positively on the earth with our fellow soil, plant, and animal companions. In this six-month interactive course, we will develop a deeper understanding of biodynamics through intensive study of Rudolf Steiner's Agriculture, the 1924 series of lectures that founded the worldwide biodynamic movement. 

Led by renowned biodynamic farmer and educator Cory Eichman of Saugeen River CSA, this is a unique opportunity to deeply explore biodynamics in a distance learning format. This is the second year the course is being offered through the Biodynamic Association after many years as an on-farm course in Ontario. 

Digging Deeper: Cosmic and Earthly Evolution for Farmers

Course in process. ​Registration now closed.

Digging Deeper: Cosmic and Earthly Evolution for Farmers​ is an advanced biodynamic course for those who have completed The Individuality of the Farm. Rudolf Steiner gave thousands of lectures, but wrote only a couple dozen books. The book An Outline of Esoteric Science (also titled Occult Science in previous translations) is Steiner's most comprehensive summary of the entirety of his work meant for the general public, and lays the foundation for most of the lecture courses he gave, including Agriculture

The curriculum of this course is centered on Chapter 4 of An Outline of Esoteric Science, which looks at the evolution of our Solar System, the Earth, the kingdoms of nature and humanity. We will specifically explore those aspects that relate to our work on the land.

Prerequisite: The Individuality of the Farm. Register now.

"Absolute joy to be able to connect to a thought provoking webinar and look forward to participating again. Thank you!"   — Biodynamic Animal Husbandry Webinar Participant

Introduction to Biodynamics Webinar Recording

Recorded live on Tuesday, March 3, 2015 from 6-7:30pm CST

This webinar provides a basic introduction to the principles and practices of biodynamic agriculture, led by Cory Eichman of Saugeen School for Sacred Agriculture and Saugeen River CSA. The 90-minute session includes presentation, questions and answers, and small-group conversations.

Thank you to all who participated! Sign up to receive announcements of future webinars.


Cory Eichman has been farming in the context of biodynamic CSAs for over 20 years, beginning with apprenticeship in 1992. In 1997, he founded Saugeen River CSA, an 80-acre draft-horse-powered biodynamic farm in Durham, Ontario. Cory has been active in the Ontario Biodynamic Society since 1998, and on the board for 6 years. He was also on the board of Demeter Canada for 6 years. Cory has mentored apprentices since 1998, and has been teaching introductory and advanced Biodynamic courses through the Rudolf Steiner Centre Toronto and independently since 2005. He helped to found the North American Biodynamic Apprenticeship Program beginning in 2006, and continues to be a member of the NABDAP steering committee, as well as the BDA's Education Leadership Team since 2012.

Learn More

After watching the Intro to Biodynamics webinar, there are many ways to learn more about biodynamics, and we hope you will continue exploring. A few good resources to start include:

Biodynamic Animal Husbandry

Wednesday, March 16, 2016 from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm ET.

In this 90-minute interactive webinar, Steffen Schneider of Hawthorne Valley Farm shared biodynamic insights into the nature of animals, best practices for integrating livestock into a diverse farm or market garden, and strategies for supporting animal health and vitality. The webinar recording is now available for registered participants.

The Biodynamic Association's webinar series is sponsored by RSF Social Finance and  Sepixa.

 

Online Learning Offered by Others

Demeter USA: Biodynamic Farm Standard

For those farmers wanting to spend some time walking through the seven principles of the Demeter Biodynamic Farm Standard, for farm apprentices and students, or anyone for that matter who wants to learn more about what it takes to be a Demeter certified farm, Demeter USA offers comprehensive presentations on their Farmer Training page

Other Webinars

Many webinars on topics related to ecological agriculture have been offered by other organizations and are available to view online, including:

Introduction to Biodynamic Agriculture

The Biodynamic Agricultural College in the UK pleased to announce the launch of a new four-week course, Introduction to Biodynamic Agriculture, on September 26th 2016, offered at a cost of £50. This course is designed for anyone who is interested in biodynamic agriculture, from any perspective — whether you grow food, produce wine or simply enjoy high quality produce, this course is for the biodynamically curious!  See further details here. 

Organic Seed Alliance

Organic seed growers need more mentorship and courses that are comprehensive in scope and combine theoretical and practical instruction. To address this gap, OSA teamed up with the Multinational Exchange for Sustainable Agriculture (MESA) to help experienced farmers pass on their seed knowledge to beginning farmers through a national internship program. The six-part webinar series is being held throughout the 2016 growing season. Each webinar is led by OSA and other organic seed experts, and focuses on basic skills needed for growing and producing organic seed.

To participate, you'll need to set up an account through the Seed Internship Program even if you don't plan to participate as a host farm or intern. Create an account here.