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Max Melby

Max has done all sorts of work at Arete Academy. Between field trips, teaching science, minor plumbing fixes, and school leadership, the best part has stayed more or less consistent- seeing students make connections with others.

Past Work

Prior to working at Arete, Max established his identity as an educator in a handful of different nonformal education settings. Max spent several years working at the Staring Lake Nature Center in Eden Prairie, teaching a variety of outdoor programs as well as developing an active school program. At the Minnesota Zoological Garden, Max taught a variety of youth and adult courses, including the development of STEM programming for the Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM) and Urban Boat Builders. Max spent two incredible years working at Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center, teaching visiting groups, managing the care of ambassador animals, and mentoring teaching naturalist staff.

A Favorite Teaching Experience

In 2017, Max developed a middle school ecology project in which students began by assuming a professional title (landscape architect, conservation biologist, biochemist, environmental engineer, etc.) to frame their learning about ecological concepts- as well as the potential job duties. Students' final projects were proposals for project development that would fit into the context of their professional field. 

Personal Life 

Max and his wife Dayna were thrilled to welcome their daughter, Hattie, into the world in May of 2020. Since then, Max's favorite activities can usually be boiled down to "hanging out with Hattie." Max enjoys woodworking projects, home improvement, camping, and coffee.


Email is the best way to contact Arete staff.


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