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field environmental philosophy
Summer School Teacher In Training Program Position: A teacher in training will assist the adult staff for one week of school (5, 6-hour days) in either the Wings or Sharpshins programs. This year the staff will consist of an assistant director, a teacher, and the teacher trainee, who will assume the position of third in...
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I do get excited about maps like this one, which shows new areas in Chesterfield and Westhampton the USFWS is proposing for conservation. Here are the comments I sent USFWS, supporting “CCP Alternative C”: Dear US Fish and Wildlife Service, As a resident of Westhampton, Massachusetts, and director of the Westhampton-based 501(c)3 Biocitizen School of Environmental...
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The Biocitizen Corps was up to its knees in chilly flowing water again this Fall, catching and inventory the bugs who live in the substrates of our rivers and brooks. River bugs that trout love to eat, & that require cold oxygen-rich water, are the ones we hope to catch, because not only do trout...
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Director’s note: A recent visit to the Metropolitan Museum of Art (which contains work thousands of years old from myriad cultures) confirms the idea that our perception of beauty in nature is innate and universally shared. For many of us, our first attraction to nature arose from a good feeling of perceiving beauty in flowers,...
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Aesthetic value is a keystone of environmental philosophy. We love, and take care of, things we find beautiful. Biocitizen and HCC professor John Calhoun have made a commitment to work together for a year, walking together, learning, and creating art that is beautiful, that expresses important moments in, and facets of, Holyoke’s biocultural history. You...
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A perfect after-Thanksgiving hike for those who want to walk a few miles off trail, sweat a little and get the feel of what Nonotuck would be like if there were no houses around—i.e., if it was wild: because walking from the Westhampton Public Library over Mt Pisgah—i.e., the Berkshire ridges that divide the CT...
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If you know what bugs live in a river, you can gauge its health. So, every year just as Summer slips into Fall, the Biocitizen Corps ventures out and catches some, following EPA protocols, in a national citizen science initiative called “Rapid Bioassessments of Benthic Invertebrates.” Certain bugs need lots of oxygen. The cleanest coldest...
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Biocitizens—it’s rapid biotic assessment time! Which means: time to get into the rivers and collect the bugs that live under rocks. The bugs tell us—by their amount, variety and size—how oxygenated (& healthy) our rivers are: an annual “physical,” just like at the doctors’. The Biocitizen Corps reunites in the early Fall to care for...
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Allow me to give you an Earth Day gift I’ve been trying to wrap up ever since I studied under an eminent Thoreau scholar who, in his first lecture, handed it to me—by saying: “For Thoreau, nature was a symbol.” “A symbol of what?” I blurted, admittedly interrupting but…come on: a symbol? “Of God, of...
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Our national economy isn’t making us happy. We don’t want to contribute to global warming, for example, but our economy does and so do we. We don’t want to drink plastic-bottle water, and fill up the sea and cover the land with them, but the tap water tastes bad or we’re traveling or whatever. Many,...
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