Eco-literacy Letter: Braid
At the start of this assignment, I had to think and reflect again as to what I thought eco-literacy meant to me and my experience with the environment. I thought about my two nieces, Nicole and Jessica, who have brought me on so many of their adventures around nature and have taught me to see the environment through different lenses. As Capra (2007) states in the reading, Ecological literacy is the understanding the principles of organization that have evolved in ecosystems and to understand the principles of ecology, we need a new way of seeing and thinking about the world- in terms of relationships, connectedness, and context. Also, Capra suggests that we should “create possibilities for developing abiding relationships with the natural world” (2007, p. 17). Through the encounters of the environment and the lessons of interacting, connecting, and making relationships with the world around us, my nieces have taught me what it meant to be eco-literate.
As we shared our letter or poem in a group, I noticed that Payton wrote a poem very similar to mine. She looked at ecoliteracy through the eyes of her young neighbour who was very curious about the world and had a passion for nature. She watched the joy and fascination of all the different encounters he had with the environment from the littlest things like watching the fresh snow fall to playing in the leaves. Payton saw the connection her neighbour had with the environment and the love he had for mother nature. Both, Payton’s neighbour and myself had a connection to the environment through nature which we explored, asked questions, and interacted with.
At the end of Payton’s poem she wrote that she wishes for her neighbour to never see the harm that humans have done to the environment. This sentence made me think about eco-literacy in a whole new light which I want to connect with the poem that Victoria shared. Victoria wrote a poem about her sister who is aware of the ecological issues that are present in the world and is actively taking part in caring about the environment by doing everything she can to reduce her carbon footprint in the world she lives in. She highlighted the importance of knowing and recognizing environmental issues and described the actions her sister was taking to preserve or prevent destruction of the environment.
This view of seeing the environment through the lens of ecological issues and sustainability has broadened my understanding of eco-literacy. I had a narrow view on the environment and only thought of it in the perspective of nature, but after hearing Victoria’s poem, I have connected the two ideas together and recognized that the environment and eco-literacy is about how we connect and maintain positive interactions with the world around us through curiosities and actions to preserve our environment. As David Orr suggests in the reading, we “desperately need more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of every kind. It needs people who live well in their places.” (2004, p. 12). We all need to do our part in maintaining the beauty of our environment so future generations can experience the world as we have.
Capra, F. (2007). Sustainable Living, Ecological Literacy, & the Breath of Life. Canadian Journal of Environmental Education, 12(1), 9-19.
Orr, David (2004), What is Education for? In Earth in Mind, pp. 7-15. Washington DC: First Island Press.