John Hall and Laura Benton (continued)

Jan 16th, 2018 | By | Category: BLTN Teachers, Winter 2018

In addition to creating a garden, we hope students will connect across cultural and geographic divides. Kentucky and California have very different growing seasons, and this difference will help students understand the importance of place in growing food. In Cli-Fi, we discussed the ways the effects of climate change transgress borders. Any effective response to climate change requires an acknowledgment of our common responsibility and global citizenship. Change, however, begins with local knowledge and action. To enact this understanding in our students, we want them to communicate across state borders to develop a common understanding of both the practicalities of urban gardening and what it means to be a climate change activist. In the face of agribusiness and conventional farming, urban agriculture provides a viable way of growing food that respects the land and communities.

In the fall, Laura and I will develop each of our clubs and lay the foundations for a successful collaboration in the spring. In Louisville, I will need to set up the 4-H club, encourage students to join, and teach them about urban gardening through hands-on activities in the garden. I will research how to facilitate digital student collaboration and develop curriculum for the after-school program. Laura and I will communicate throughout the fall to hone in on our plans for the spring.

In the spring, we will begin the student collaboration by initiating the conversation with an icebreaker and student interactions. Then we will develop common inquiry about climate change. Our common entry point will be research and discussion of food justice through the lens of food deserts in our respective communities. From here we will tie issues of food and environmental justice to the larger context of climate change, thinking about how our actions affect our environment as we move from a local to global understanding of climate change. Within this framework we will begin work on the creation of the garden at UPA through the manual developed by Fern Creek students. This part of the project will be student-led. At each school at the end of the school year, we will showcase our work to our school or greater communities.

As part of of this BLTN and Cli-Fi project, we will send a fall and spring report to the BLTN and Jennifer Wicke, professor of Cli-Fi.

Return to “Bringing it Back.”

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