Class Site  Jay Silver 
Exploring Urban Nature
A Case Study of Becoming an Explorer - Dec. 2007
learned first person naturalists nativeness obsering nature man on the street mini case study Comments

Breaking through to Awareness
I interviewed Erik who started A Walk in the Woods, a nature guide service, in Tennessee. Erik spends his time in the Great Smokey Montains. He gave this example about exploring nature with a stethescope and this vivid experience that was like no other. He stressed the importance of giving this experience to people, even if it's just one person at a time. I wonder how exploratory tools could be more like stethescopes?
What Drew You In?
I asked some of the students what experience could possibly be analagous to the "life blood of the tree" experience... but in an urban setting? I was trying to figure out how to do what the naturalists are already doing in the wilderness, but how to do it in the city? For Shutsu, it was the little discoveries of watching "Natives" live their lives.
Try Taking a Date There
This was David Lee's advice.
"This might sound silly, but try taking a date to that place. What is it that you want to show him/her from that site? Which paths do you take, and which places do you avoid? Do you wait for a sunny day, or is the site much more romantic and memorable in the rain? Urban areas stick in our minds because of the personal significance we attach to them. In that respect, Erik's statement makes some sense." David Lee
One at a Time?
Here Celina responds to Erik's notion of taking just one person at a time. It's a question that comes up a lot in pedagogy: whether things can or even should scale. I take the position that you have to have something wonderful to scale before worrying about whether something scales, and that once you have something wonderful enough people will find a way to make it scale. OLPC (One Laptop Per Child Project) is a good example of this.
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