Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Doctoral students "solidarize" with the garden

Today, a class of doctoral students from EDST's EdD (EDST 593A.971 Ethics in Educational Leadership) program joined me in the garden with their course instructors Jeannie Kerr and Vanessa Andreotti.

Uprooted cherry tree & oak cuttings, old Orchard Garden
We walked down from the Scarfe building, along the 'sacred lawn' on Main Mall, and paused for a moment at the old garden. Jeannie described the old garden as a graveyard, and it really does feel sad and abandoned, particularly now that construction for Vantage College has begun and the giant oak tree that flanked the garden has been cut and piled onto the space. We talked about mourning, in the context of this particular garden but also more generally in terms of the extinctions (of plants, animals, languages...) that accompany globalization and the Anthropocene.

Washing station
The new garden, in contrast, was vivid and vital and filled with surprises and abundance. Harvesting giant chard, kohlrabi, cucumbers, zucchini, kale, carrots, and beets reminded us of the great gifts of life that nurturing the land, being nurtured by the land can offer. What are our individual and collective ways of thanking the land for these gifts?

Harvesting turned to food preparation (and weeding - thank you!) as we prepared a rainbow salad and vegetables to take home. Gathered together around the food, we discussed the course readings around accountability (Ranson, 2003) and decolonization and the pedagogies of solidarity (Gaztambide-Fernandez, 2012).

Thank you to Jeannie, Vanessa, and the wonderful students for visiting the garden and your generous donation. Please come again!

Gaztambide-Fern├índez, R. A. (2012). Decolonization and the pedagogy of solidarity. Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society, 1(1), 41-67. 

Ranson, S. (2003). Public accountability in the age of neo-liberal governance. Journal of Education Policy, 18(5), 459-480. 

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Math Art Workshop - Wednesday, July 16, 12-5pm

George Hart (in blue) and a giant bamboo hyperboloid at The Orchard Garden
You are invited to two free math/ art workshops in the UBC Orchard Garden, a student-led teaching and learning garden on the central UBC campus:

RSVP & further information:

We are very pleased to have visiting Mathematical Artists in Residence George Hart and Nick Sayers visiting us next week, thanks to a grant from the UBC Teaching and Learning Enhancement Fund (TLEF) and additional support from the PME (Psychology of Mathematics Education) 2014 international conference at UBC and PIMS, the Pacific Institute of Mathematical Studies.

Nick and George will be leading workshops to create functional mathematical art pieces for the garden as examples of ways teachers can teach math via art, in a school garden.

You can participate for the full one or two workshops, or just drop in for an hour at any point. PME participants are invited to come to the Orchard Garden on Wed. July 16 from 4:00 - 5:30 PM to "Meet George Hart" and take part in that part of the workshop.