Banack, Dr. Hartley

Dr. Hartley Banack
PhD, MA, BEd (Simon Fraser University) Assistant Professor
Email: Phone:
  • Prince George


I grew up in Toronto in a family and community that practiced Jewish family values, yet I do not practice any faith (spiritually or politically), beyond what might be called faith to a will to support and help develop senses of wellness.

I am passionate about outdoor learning and time spent outdoors. I attempt live ‘locally' and explore locality in my approach to outdoor learning. I hold a B.C. teaching certificate (BEd) from SFU, as a high school Science (Biology and Earth Sciences) teacher, and I have taught with various age groups and in distinct educational settings, from pre-school to post-secondary and beyond, including seniors. My educational pursuits include a Master’s (Diversity in Curriculum and Instruction) and a PhD (Curriculum Theory and Implementation), both from SFU.

I resided in Vancouver (xʷməθkʷəy̓əm) from 1999 to 2021. Other than Canada, I lived in Chile and Costa Rica, y puedo hablar el Español, ya un poco oxidado. I identify as a father, partner, son, brother, friend, colleague, educator, and community member. Volunteering and community service are important to me.

I love to adventure, cook, cycle, garden, hike, jury rig, paddle, play chess, philosophize, read poetry and philosophy, skate, ski, strum guitar, throw a disc, and make others smile (aka be silly). I have been an outdoor educator since my mid-teens – initially, guiding back-country wilderness trips, then leading non-formal outdoor education programs as an administrator and executive director. I have worked with a wide range of community-based, non-profit programs and services, and even started a few up.

I have enjoyed participating in experiences with some fairly radical work teams, which have significantly (in)formed my “ways” of teamwork, learning, and knowing. I am open to diversity, difference, and meaning-making through sharing and participation. I have learned that outdoor quests are not about the summit, but rather adventure.

Research and Expertise

Research Fields:
  • Climate Change
  • Conservation
  • Earth Science
  • Education
  • Environment
  • Ethics
  • Geography
  • Health
  • Health and Wellbeing
  • Integrated Knowledge Translation
  • International Studies
  • Mental Health
  • Northern Issues
  • Sustainability
  • Weather
  • Youth
Areas of Expertise:

education, curriculum, pedagogy, philosophy, epistemology, environmental education, physical education, health education, outdoor education, science education, place-based education

Languages Spoken:
  • English
  • Spanish
Currently accepting graduate students
Supervises in:
  • PhD NRES
  • PhD Health Sciences

Interested in Education, broadly speaking

Available to be contacted by the media as a subject matter expert

Selected Publications

Banack, H., Berger, I., Elliot, E., Hirsche, K., Stone-Cole, B. (2020). Finding Movement in Stillness: Storying Our Collective Journey of Advocating for Outdoor Early Childhood Programs in British Columbia During a Global Pandemic. Education in the Time of Covid 19: Storying the Crisis Vol. 10 No. 3. Retrieved from

Banack, H. & Berger, I. (2019). The emergence of early childhood outdoor education programs in British Columbia: A meandering story. Children’s Geographies. Retrieved from

Banack, H. (2018). Where STEM binds, and ST(eee)EM flows: A case for where in STEM discourse and practice. Critical Education. 9(16). Retrieved from

Banack, H., Beattie, A.E., Berger, I., Montague, A., Strich, D. (2018). Acts of reading and gathering in place: our stories so far…Ecothinking. Volume 1.

Banack, H. (2015). Reflections on Outdoor Experiential Learning in Teacher Education: Raffan’s words revisited Pathways: the Ontario journal of outdoor education. 27 (3).

Banack, H. (2015). Fractals of Outdoor and Experiential Learning: Interview Patterns with Dr. James Raffan. Pathways: the Ontario journal of outdoor education. 28 (1).

Banack, H. and Elza, D. (2009). Desentence (sizing) the Reference: Lifenotes in Endnotes. Educational Insights, 13(4). Available:

Bai, H. & Banack, H. (2006). To see a world in a grain of sand: Complexity and moral education. Complicity: An international Journal of Complexity and Education, 3(1), 5–20. Available online at