Moving Field Guides: Learning ecology through dance
Children use all of their senses when exploring the outdoors, a crucial first step on the road to inquiry and an understanding of the environment. In a partnership with a professional dance company, a Forest Service scientist, and a local environmental educator, Baltimore children turned their observations of nature into movement as they learned about the environment. The FS scientist led discussions of local ecology in a neighborhood park in Baltimore, MD., The students and dancers created movements to express what they learned, which they combined into a Moving Field Guide, a dance representing natural events, which included such events as bark sloughing off a tree trunk, wind blowing winged seeds to new homes, ducks migrating, and reactions to a skunk. These dances are shared through community performances and videos as encouragement to other children and parents to notice the intricacies of nature and find ways to make those observations personal and enduring. Additional funding provided by the Washington Office Conservation Education program will extend the Moving Field Guides experience to Girl Scouts in the Nation's Capital region in 2012.
Forest Service Partners