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Connecting Past and Present (and Future?)




By the end of the morning, I began to intertwine
the previous days' discussions with today's...

Connecting Past and Present (and Future):

What Good Does it Do Us,
To Know Where We Came From?
(Does It Help Us Know Where We are Going?)


Rosemary: "it was a great trip but a too long adventure". These words really describe my feelings today. I thoroughly enjoyed everything from the mapping activity and discussions of the forces changing the demography of the city to the story of the attentive mole but I really felt the need to do something. (Am I changing into my students?)...It is thought provoking to ponder about the forces that shape our place but as teachers isn't it even more important to prepare our students to adapt to the changing landscape of their future.

Joyce: I'm not so interested... the word "historical" sends me off to the coffee machine.

What makes local history useful to us?
Why might it engage our students?
It seems to be about CHANGE....

Rita: I never paid any attention to why the changes were occurring where they were taking place. It will and worthwhile to investigate the changes that have taken place where we live or we work at currently.

Syreeta: I think my students will enjoy seeing how their neighborhood has changed through maps, pictures, and census information.

Jennifer: I am so excited to learn about where I am as it is sooooooo different from where I was.

Jack: Last year I focused on where I was in my childhood, this year where I am today....most of us return to where we started from....These are references for our personal maps: 1. We start with our own experiences. 2. What we expect for the future. 3. Connections to others. 4. Influences. 5. History. 6. Spiritual. 7. Family

Diane: I think this would be a great activity for our students to research in the classroom...where there families lived, where the school is located, or possibly use it as a part of an environmental project...I would like to develop a project that the kids use the maps, research what the area looked like 50-100 year ago, how the area developed, and how humans have impacted the environment either in a positive or a negative manner.

Mary Ellen: The discussions today were fascinating....It's stimulating to have a variety of new lenses through which we can look at where we are and how we've come to be there...The mole poking up through a particular space periodically is a clever way to hone our observation skills....Taking time to notice the effects that people have had on the environment, then engaging in critical thinking and conversations about how and why something was done will have ramifications for our world as we know it now and hope it will be in the future.

The Voice of the Skeptic....
The Limits of (Our Ability to?) Change... ?

Wil: I am more than a little in doubt that our environment is more defined by what human have done, than by nature...the environment may be an artifact of humans but it is constrained by nature, not to say anything about human nature.

Any help on this score from Liz McCormack who will "Place Us in the Universe"?


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