Bob Abel

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Olympic College

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Interviewing the Past: Developing a Sense of Place through Oral Histories part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Activities
Discerning how one's environment is changing is difficult without a longer-term perspective. In this activity, students conduct interviews with long time locals (e.g., with friends, relatives, tribal elders, or nursing home residents, etc.) to obtain first-hand anecdotal accounts of how the area has changed and what has remained constant. Students recount their interviews based on a sample set of questions, summarize their findings and provide their reflections on what they learned. This could also be an excellent assignment for discussing the benefits, disadvantages, and proper use of anecdotal, qualitative data.