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Introducing Ourselves to a Sense of Place

Welcome to the on-line forum area for "Science and a Sense of Place: Locating Ourselves in the World," being held at Bryn Mawr College, July 23-August 3, 2007.

Please introduce yourself here, by describing the place you are from and the place where you teach.


Then post your initial thoughts about the potentials and perils of “placing” science in a particular location, and any questions you might have about instituting a place-based curriculum in your own school. We look forward to exploring these questions with you in person!

Anne & Wil

(Anne Dalke and Wil Franklin)



Diane OFee-Powers's picture


My name is Diane O'Fee-Powers and I teach 7th&8th grade at Cook-Wissahickon Elementary School. Last year was my first year at Cook-Wiss and I taught science, this year I will be teaching reading. My school is in Roxborough. My first thought as I read this article was "How can we do this in Phila., with the Core Curriculum? The more I read the article, the more I thought of ways to incorporate it into the classroom, one of my thoughts is to possibly use it as a Service Learning Project. Last year we created a magazine & I would like to do that again this year.I was thinking of publishing the results of the project in the paper. I want the kid to decide what the project should be, one idea I had was to address the issue of violence, another idea is to address an environmental problem. My school just started recycling, so that might be the direction we take. Cook-Wiss is close to several parks which opens up more possiblities for environmental projects. As you can see I am really excited about Science and a Sense of Place!
Ashley Dawkins's picture


Hello All! My name is Ashley and I am a senior here at Bryn Mawr College. Physics is my major and education is my minor. I will be going to graduate school next year for a Masters of Arts in Teaching and certification. I plan on teaching in urban public schools and coaching. But before I fully start my career in the U.S., I would like to move to Buenos Aires, Argentina for a few years and maybe teach at an international school. I mainly want to do this for personal reasons, but by living down there I will finally become fluent in Spanish. This will allow me to be of better use in the urban schools in the U.S.
Anne Dalke's picture

More introductions....

More introductions are available @ /exchange/suminst/scienceplace2007
J Parks's picture

I'm Jennifer math and

I'm Jennifer math and science teacher at Beeber Middle. Differentiated instruction is big at Beeber. What better way to customize and make education relevant than by "Locating Ourselves in the Real Wold"? 
Patricia Mundy's picture

Science and Sense of Place

Good morning! I'm a special education teacher at Huey School located at 52nd and Pine St. in West Philadelphia. I am interested in helping my students to learn how to respect the environment they live in, and find their place in resolving issues that will enhance their quality of life.
Rita Stevens's picture

Science and a Sense of Place

Good Morning Educators, My name is Rita Stevens and I have been teaching special education in the School District of Philadelphia for over 25 years. I am currently appointed to Samuel B. Huey School, inclusion classrooms for 3rde and 4th grades. There are several things that I ageree with the article about and some that I disagree with. The disagreement is only because of the many restraints that are imposed upon us by my school and/or school district. Huey is currently an Edison School. But, I do believe that what the article is talking about isw workable but you have to have administrative as well as other supports.
Judith Lucas-Odom's picture


Hi! My name is Judy, I teach science in Chester-Upland School District. I am happy to be here and I am also excited. I have 4 children and three are now in college. I know this will be an awarding session!
Mary Ellen McGinnity's picture

Thoughts about "placing" science

Mary Ellen McGinnity

     I'm a first grade teacher at The Baldwin School in Bryn Mawr.  Although I don't teach science, I try to nurture a sense of discovery and wonder in my students as we explore our 25-acre campus.  The '07-'08 school year presents a unique opportunity - the lower end of the campus will be undergoing daily changes as our new gym is being constructed.  The playground will be gone, as will the Assembly Room.  The landscape will be significantly altered.  What will the students' initial reactions be in September - confusion, curiosity, concern?  How can I heop them adjust to the changing aspects of their school environment? 

Mary Ellen McGinnity's picture


Mary Ellen McGinnity
Rosemary Krygowski's picture

My name is Rosemary

My name is Rosemary Krygowski. I teach seventh and eighth grade science at the Norwood School. Norwood school is a 1 -8 building in the Interboro School district. I describe where I teach as being 3 exits away from the Philadelphia Airport traveling North on I-95.Norwood is a lovely neighborhood. Most of the families are solid working class individuals who really care about their children. I have taught forever and as I read the article I felt a sense of having seen and read similar concepts in my teaching career.I feel that the 5 elements that the author discussed in this article are all valid but cover many different topics.Learning from your surroundings is a good idea but I feel as a teacher that we guide our students so that they are life long learners. The journey to that spot is as different as the students who sit before us.I am hoping that this class will help me lead students on that journey.
Jack Marine's picture

All About Me

My name is Jack Marine and last summer I resigned from Raising Horizons Quest Charter School as the Environmental Science Specialist to take a job as the Lead Science Teacher at West Philadelphia Achievement Elementary School. This was a
challenging position as I teach science "on a cart" to fifteen classes, grades 1-5, using five different FOSS Science Kits. There was a lot of walking and a lot of preparation, but the staff were more pleasant that at my lasty school. This was the first year they had a full-time Science Teacher.

I grew up in this area, went to college for two years in Boston, at BU,and then spent two years in Philadelphia At Philadelphia Textile (Now PU).
I worked for twenty years in the clothing business and have been teaching for eleven years. I am an avid organic gardener, and you can expect to taste my delicious vegetables shortly! I love animals, and this summer I am raising two hens and a single box turtle (one disappeared two days ago) in my backyard, and my leopard gecko is inside our house in Bala Cynwyd. For the summer, my 14 year old daughter is away at camp in the Poconos, and my nearly 17 year old son is at home aggravating the sh--t out of us! My wife and I will be married 22 years in September.

I think teaching science in a single location at thsi juncture in time is difficult. Children need to be aware of the infrastructure of their school
environment, but we must expose them to other locations so they can learn
different perspectives. I think there are many opportunities to create special
locations at our school's property that will teach children civic values and encourage exploration. But I want them to see how students from other parts of the community and far from the community are involved in similar activities.

Ann Dixon's picture


Hi, and welcome to Serendip's Exchange. I'll be around for questions about how to use the system. For more about me, please visit my home page.



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