The 2013 EE Expo theme is “Environmental Education and the Arts”. Environmental education sometimes focuses too much attention on fixing environmental problems rather than encouraging environmental appreciation. As Baba Dioum (1968), a Sengali environmentalist, noted in a general assembly speech before the International Union for Conservation of Nature,
“In the end we will conserve only what we love.
We will love only what we understand. We will understand only what we are taught.”
What better way to teach our students to understand and love the Earth than by sharing the joy of nature. And one of the best ways to do that is to teach environmental concepts and issues through the Arts — visual and performing!
Throughout history, the environment has been a powerful source of inspiration for visual and performance artists. From the prehistoric cave paintings at Lascaux, France to Grofe’s Grand Canyon Suite, to a modern-day Kindergartner’s drawing of lollipop flowers beneath a puff-clouded sky — nature has long found expression in sounds, shapes, textures and colors. The Arts can inspire environmental awareness and appreciation, too. Consider America the Beautiful, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons symphony, an intricate sculpture, or a simple sketch. All focus attention on the natural environment and inspire us to nurture and care for planet Earth.
You can make the Arts part of your environmental education efforts in many ways. Join us at the 2013 Oklahoma Environmental Education Expo for a day filled with the Arts including performances by the Banana Slug String Band and concurrent sessions focused on teaching environmental education through the Arts.
The Banana Slug String Band is a group of loveable musicians and educators from the coastal redwoods of Northern California. The Slugs are “Airy” Larry Graff, Doug “Dirt” Greenfield, “Solar” Steve Van Zandt and “Marine” Mark Nolan. The Band’s exciting performances integrate music and performing arts with environment education concepts. With vocals, guitars, mandolin, bass, harmonica, banjo and percussion, Slug songs range from rockin’ boogies to sensitive ballads; folk songs to reggae and rap. The Band incorporates music, theater, puppetry and audience participation to create a fun-filled learning experience.
Concurrent Sessions (Click here to get session descriptions):
S.T.E.A.M, not S.T.E.M.
Printmaking with Plants
Nature Journaling: Taking a Closer Look
Trash to Treasure
A Stitch in Time. . .
Bringing Nature Preserves to the Classroom
Stories and Songs for a Green Earth
Making and Playing Musical Gourds
Name that Nature Tune
Movin’, Groovin’, and Growing Up WILD
Playing for the Musically Timid
Using Environmental Songs in the Classroom
The Oklahoma Environmental Education Expo is sponsored by the Oklahoma Association of Environmental Education (OKAEE). Our goal is to promote environmental education opportunities by gathering experts, teachers, and community members together to share ideas and resources available through our state agencies and universities.
Check out our new Facebook Page to stay in touch with other Expo participants.