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Meet the North
The Lindblad Expedition Naturalists were amazing. They inspired me in so many ways by who they are and what they taught me. Jennifer Kingsley and my mentor Eric Guth who are young inspiring explorers. They are working on a project called, "Meet the North" #MeettheNorth @MeettheNorth MeettheNorth.org.
Talking with Jenny, she gave me the idea for the Model Arctic Council project that my students will be participating in. Eric taught me about the ice, the stories the ice tells. I could go on, but I will make another post specifically about all of the amazing naturalists. The take-away should be that you need to follow @meetthenorth.
Where are the people?
Prior the the expedition I was in Oslo and had the opportunity to go to the Nobel Peace Museum. It was such an inspiration that while on the Explorer ship visiting some of the most beautiful places in the world, I often thought back to that experience. I struggled with trying to find the 'right' focus, since I am so passionate about equality. As a social scientist, my interest lay with the people and the human impact on the environment. Then I remembered that equality is more than just the people, it is also the environment. Current climate change arguments have brought to mind the inspiration I gained from the arctic environment. Nowhere in the world is that argument about climate change more prevalent than in the arctic region. The egocentrism of people is such that they feel it is either all human caused or all natural, when really it is the environment's natural reaction to human action. It is not one or the other, but rather the interaction of both. I think this is a lesson, not just about how we understand and treat the environment, but also how we treat other people. There needs to be a balance and an understanding of the consequences of our actions.
A balanced curriculum
This is why I feel that I need to have a balance in my curriculum. The first semester is focused on teaching geography literacy skills with an emphasis on the environment. My goal is to facilitate opportunities for my students to become environmental stewards. Second semester is focused on the historical literacy skills with an emphasis on human rights. My goal is to empower my students to be positively involved in their local and global communities.