The prompt for this journal entry was an easy one for me. I have many places that I remember as a child or growing in to a young adult that sparked my love for nature. The majority of the places emanate from my family farm. In the top and center of my creative journal piece, you can see a door opening to the sun setting. Growing up I would go sit in the empty, unused hay loft and just stare out the door with my feet dangling over the edge. Feeling the wind and seeing the view over the valley was absolutely exhilarating! Directly below that image, there is a little girl (me) sitting in a wheat field. I can remember the process of seeing my dad planting the wheat, checking the new growth throughout the summer, and eventually harvesting the same crop. Seeing the evolution of a grain of wheat producing many more grains of wheat was such a rich learning experience for a young child. Those are just two of my many experiences that gave me an appreciation for nature.
As I was reading the David Orr article posted for this week, I was struck by many of the thoughts he had. One of the thoughts was to bond minds with nature. To have a courtship between mind and nature. I feel like I am already there, but to incorporate this into a classroom is the next step. Something I can do in my classroom is to instill institutional flexibility and creativity to get past the norms of school. Learning doesn’t necessarily need to be sitting at a desk reading books all the time. Melding my nature appreciation with traditional schooling will help with that process. Taking students outside and incorporating other subjects into a nature lesson is something that I would enjoy doing, and it would be an ecological learning experience for the students as well. Watching the field trip experiences that the action learning groups had gave me some great ideas. It made me think of Mrs. Frizzle from the TV show “The Magic School Bus”, and how I want to be a teacher who fights the teaching paradigms and creates a new teaching identity for myself that is outside the norm.
Orr, D. (2004) The problem of disciplines and the disciplines of problems. https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8VQFXPP3QToOXdycjNNMTdtcUE/view