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Phased Assignments in a Quarter-Long Argumentation & Research Course with a Sustainability Focus
Don Foran, Centralia College and The Evergreen State College
This teaching-and-learning activity is a phased process for developing a credible sustainability component in an Argumentation and Research course. The major assignment is a creation of an 8-10 page research paper in MLA format. All readings in this course are from the anthology, Listening to Earth (Hallowell and Levy).
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Sense of Place
Where/How Do We Live: The Power of Ads and Sustainability
Arlene Plevin, Olympia College
This writing/thinking activity invites students to consider the power of advertisements and how they live in the world. Beginning with deconstructing ads, this activity has students appreciating the power of visual rhetoric and what strategies might be employed to persuade them. Students consider the cultural milieu of ads and the concepts of sustainability they promote (or don't).
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Social & Environmental Justice, Lifestyles & Consumption, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices
Writing and Walking, Pilgrimage and Process: Working with the Essays of Linda Hogan & Henry David Thoreau
Rebecca Chamberlain, The Evergreen State College
By comparing and contrasting the essays of Hogan and Thoreau, students begin to develop a more complex understanding of their own identity and sense of place; the historical and cultural context around issues of sustainability and environmental ethics.
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ethics & Values, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Sense of Place, Social & Environmental Justice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices
The Sustainability of Place: Making Scholarship Public
Jill Gatlin, University of Washington
Students are assigned to observe and research a local place of their choosing and to develop a unique analytical argument about the social and/or ecological sustainability of this space. The final project is a pamphlet directed to a public audience accompanied by a proposal for its production and distribution.
Bioregion Scale: Local Community/Watershed
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ecosystem Health, Human Impact & Footprint, Social & Environmental Justice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices
Toxic Hygiene: How Safe Is Your Bathroom?
Danielle Gray, Whatcom Community College
Students learn about potential safety and health concerns of personal hygiene products. Students examine labels and advertisements of these projects and then engage in rhetorical and cultural analysis of these advertisements.
Bioregion Scale: Home/Backyard
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Lifestyles & Consumption, Cultures & Religions, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Social & Environmental Justice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Human Health & Wellbeing
Recognizing the Impact of Dominant Culture Privilege
Robin Jeffers, Bellevue Community College
This sequence of five assignments, starting with the study of texts, has students taking a look at the concept of dominant culture privilege and then moving them out into their own world to analyze what they're seeing there.
Bioregion Scale: Global, Local Community/Watershed
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Sense of Place, Ethics & Values, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Social & Environmental Justice, Cultures & Religions
Investigating Local Food: Meet Your Washington Farmers
June Johnson Bube, Seattle University
This assignment sequence seeks to stimulate students' thinking and writing about food production in the western Washington bioregion through a series of activities combining readings, class discussion, fieldwork, and writing assignments. Collaborative work in and outside of class culminates in students' interviewing local farmers and vendors at farmers markets and writing a surprising informative essay.
Bioregion Scale: Campus, Local Community/Watershed
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ecosystem Health, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Human Health & Wellbeing, Social & Environmental Justice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Food Systems & Agriculture
Twenty Miles from Tomorrow: Examining the Past, Present and Future of the Lower Kuskokwim River Delta
Lauren McClanahan, Western Washington University
This project involves pairing pre-service teachers with students in the rural Alaskan village of Eek in Southwestern, Alaska. By creating effective writing prompts, the pre-service teachers hope to better understand how climate change is affecting the people of this region.
Bioregion Scale: Regional
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Cultures & Religions, Ecosystem Health, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Climate Change
Mapping Place, Writing Home: Using Interactive Compositions On and Off the Trail
Kate Reavey, Peninsula College
Students will choose a physical place to study, a site that is close enough to visit at least four times during the quarter/semester. Using writing prompts, text-based research, and close observations in the "field" (the chosen place), students will create a "mashup" of spatially referenced pop-up balloons. These will include researched and narrative prose, citations and links, and some visual images, embedded into a map via Google Earth technology. Through this unique presentation, the research and writing can encourage viewers to better understand the place they have chosen to study.
Bioregion Scale: Campus
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Food Systems & Agriculture, Ecosystem Health, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Pollution & Waste, Lifestyles & Consumption, Human Impact & Footprint, Sense of Place, Social & Environmental Justice, Cultures & Religions, Sustainability Concepts & Practices
Maps and Legends: (Re)placing Composition
Jared Leising, Cascadia Community College
Because maps tell stories, offer perspectives, and make arguments, maps also act as a metaphor for the writing assignments students are given. The writing that students do in this class creates maps to where students have been (writing stories from memory), where they currently are (writing profiles from observations of places), and where they're headed. This course approaches sustainability from the viewpoint of learning to value the places in which we live through listening to and telling stories about those places.
Bioregion Scale: Local Community/Watershed, Campus
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Cultures & Religions, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Sense of Place, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice