Read Tracking Trash

Read Tracking Trash by Loree Griffin Burns this week. Take some time to find some water on your nature walk (e.g. a stream, lake, etc). Is there much trash in or around your water? Try to discover the source of the water. Does your water end up at the ocean? If you are close enough, you might even visit the ocean and go beachcombing. You might also visit a marine animal rescue or aquarium.

We spent time earlier in this course learning what science lessons looked like in form 1 and we have continued practicing nature study throughout the course. As this does such a tremendous job of building affection with Things in nature and as our methodology need not have changed much since Mason’s time, we need not spend additional time in form 1. You should have a good foundation to understand how those affections are formed at this point. 

Several weeks ago, we got our feet wet with the addition of form 2 general science using one of Mason’s favorite science books, The Sciences. Since Mason wanted students to be connected to their place and time through science, we want to choose literature that appeals to us and relates what scientists are doing in our current world. Tracking Trash is an example of a book that does that. Notice that Tracking Trash does not focus on the technical content exclusively. The author is intentional in conveying the relevance to humanity, as well as a culture of curiosity and problem-solving. The literature serves to inspire and draw our attention, but the student primarily learns about the Thing by interacting directly with Things through field and laboratory work.