Nature has become wallpaper in outdoor education; a backdrop for human-focused activities. But it doesn’t need to be. When it’s only scenery, it’s not easy to get people to engage. From personal experience I know that the natural world is a different place to someone who is seeking food, raw materials for crafts, materials for a shelter, and other necessities for life than it is to someone for whom it’s just scenery, or maybe the place they go to do a ropes course. When you rely on it, like the vast majority of humanity throughout history has, your awareness of the subtleties becomes pronounced. It becomes home. Passing this way of knowing the world on to the next generation should be among the top goals of outdoor education, but it’s not. In this podcast, I discuss why.
It was originally given as a presentation at the Snow Walker’s Rendezvous in November, 2013. I told attendees that it would be on the web as a podcast soon, but as sometimes happens technology got in the way. But with our website migration complete, it’s time to hit the publish button. If you’ve been waiting, sorry for the delay.