OutsideInMS brings the outside into the classroom

Published 2:00 pm Tuesday, November 30, 2021

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NATCHEZ — On Dec. 6 and 7, OutsideInMS will offer a Continuing Education Unit class to help teachers maintain their teaching certification. OutsideIn offers five CEUs which each last for five hours, through Co-Lin. 

Owner Robin Person said she offers hands-on programs which are fun and unique. Class fees are $25 and the CEU credit is $20. CEU attendees can take classes on Ancient Egypt, Kitchen Chemistry, Crime Scene, a DIY escape room and hands on historic preservation. 

The CEU classes are ones she has taught in her years at museums. She had to fill out an application to be able to teach them. T

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“It is designed to show them what they can do in the classroom with their kids,” Person said. “It also gives basic background information about the topic. I hope to offer them every month. People need to call me to make sure there is space available.” 

After budget cuts at Jefferson College, the site was shut down by the state. She had to reinvent herself and her business began in her house two years ago.

She moved to her location at 112 N. Commerce St. for more room to grow. She was using a ping pong table to spread out all of her supplies, she said. 

Eight months ago, the business went through some of the peak times for COVID. During the height of the pandemic she did not teach any classes but when the summer rolled around she offered classes for kids. She plans to add additional services. 

“I started out wanting to bring the outside in to people,” Person said. “When you can’t go to nature, nature comes to you. I’m exploring the idea of doing an after school nature and science program.” 

Learning is not confined to a classroom or boxes. She takes people on Kayak tours on Gillard Lake at the Sibley Unit of St. Catherine Creek National Wildlife Refuge or they will go to Old River in Concordia Parish. She has also developed a downtown architecture scavenger hunt, in which people can buy a book to do the scavenger hunt. 

By next month, she hopes to offer an escape room that is an historic murder mystery. It is conveniently a traveling escape room too because she has just enough room in her van to pack it up and take it to a business for team building activities. 

CEUs are what she enjoys teaching the most, she said. 

“I enjoy teaching adults,” Person said. “They are fun to work with and are usually interested in the topic. I can go into greater depth about the topic we are learning about.” 

In addition to education, OutsideInMs offers jewelry made out of stone, fossils and glass tile. With Christmas around the corner, Person said people can also buy gift certificates for classes or kayak tours. They can also purchase a Natchez or nature box to give someone, these boxes contain educational trinkets and materials.