Thursday, December 27, 2012

Three month recap.

Three month recap.

It has been a long long while since I last wrote for this blog.  I have about 6 drafts of posts waiting to be finished but it is tough to do so when I have been busy with buying and packing a house, officiating weddings (yikes), holidays and trying to play outside myself.

It has been quite busy since October when I attended and presented at the Virginia Environmental Education Conference.

The conference went over really well, met some wonderful people and had an impromptu reunion with fellow Grad school Alumni.

The new house has changed my commute and I miss the "creek" that I would ride past and have wonderful Urban Ecology sightings of Snowy Egrets, Canada Geese, Belted Kingfishers and Bald Eagles.  I am constantly amazed at how much wildlife and wild in general is all around me in the city.  During this time of year - really any change of season - I miss living in a more rural environment and question my choice of residence.  Then I have a moment of seeing a red-tailed hawk take down a pigeon or a sparrow on The National Mall and remember that there is a lot of wild here.  I want to share that wild with others.  I want other people to create a new lens and see that even amongst the tall buildings and pavement nature is thriving.  When I have a student beg me to let them pull cat-tails out of the pond at school I know I am on the right track (future post).

I have had other students tell me recently that they want to teach their peers to be a healthy eater so the environment can be more stable.  They explained to me that it is probably more likely to have a combination of poor food choices along with degraded environments and then cited low income communities, fast food and trash everywhere go hand-in-hand from their observations.  They explained if a community has better food options the overall way of life might get better as well as the surrounding environment.  I told them the term they were looking for was Environmental Justice (EJ).  After looking into EJ further they have now added it to their college course list.

These are the conversations and moments that keep me teaching.  And keep me teaching in an Urban setting.  Finding these moments can be like a scavenger hunt at times, but that just adds to the challenge. 

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