Thursday, July 2, 2009


This smart lesson plan on the history of environmentalism is designed to help young people understand the effects of rapid industrialization on the environment and the emergence of the first conservation movement.

The plan is part of a modular curriculum called If Trees Could Talk and I found it on the website of the Forest History Society.

From the organization's website:

If Trees Could Talk: A Curriculum in Environmental History

If Trees Could Talk: A Curriculum in Environmental History is a 10-module, middle school curriculum that gives teachers the opportunity to download from our web site social studies activities that are based upon archival materials. The centerpiece of each module is a compilation of primary resources--documents, maps, newspaper articles, oral histories or photographs--from which students are asked to gather, examine, and analyze information, and synthesize insights. The curriculum is presently being tested by teachers around the United States and has already generated much popular support.

Trees are amazing.

Also: Whitman - Song of the Redwood Tree (excerpted from Leaves of Grass)

Murmuring out of its myriad leaves, 20
Down from its lofty top, rising two hundred feet high,
Out of its stalwart trunk and limbs—out of its foot-thick bark,
That chant of the seasons and time—chant, not of the past only, but the future.


You untold life of me,
And all you venerable and innocent joys, 25
Perennial, hardy life of me, with joys, ’mid rain, and many a summer sun,
And the white snows, and night, and the wild winds;
O the great patient, rugged joys! my soul’s strong joys, unreck’d by man;
(For know I bear the soul befitting me—I too have consciousness, identity,
And all the rocks and mountains have—and all the earth;) 30
Joys of the life befitting me and brothers mine,
Our time, our term has come.

Nor yield we mournfully, majestic brothers,
We who have grandly fill’d our time;
With Nature’s calm content, and tacit, huge delight, 35
We welcome what we wrought for through the past,
And leave the field for them.

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