A pilot project exploring arts, aesthetics and ecology combined with holistic environmental learning combined with the life on a small coastal farm in North Norway. Venue: Skagstad Farm, Engeløya, North Norway. Duration: Total of 14 days spread over 9 months commencing in November 2008.
In this project we wanted to explore how arts and aesthetics could be integrated in environmental education and the sciences based on the pedagogical platform “The farm as an educational resource.” A class of kids from the local school (11-12 years old) came one day a week to the farm to take part in Sanselig Samspill (Sensous collaborations). With the farm and the seasons as a framework, we focused on holistic learning where nature, culture, environment, aesthetics, the senses and local food were integrated. Every session had its own theme; Stones as trouble and pleasure, Fire; From sunshine to grains, Natural Sounds etc. We organised the groups into three rotating workstations – a kitchen group, a farm group and an arts group. We wanted to give the children knowledge and skills, to experience the relationship between theory and practice and to meet the needs and passion of each individual child in a nurturing and positive environment. The kids made a traditional boat slip out of rocks wooden poles and learned to cook carrot soup, they baked bread with stone ground flour and saw a film about bread as poetry. The students chopped and stacked wood and selected seed-potatoes, they went on a “beach concert” listening and “recording” natural sounds, built amazing stone towers and learned to forge and much, much more. We emphasized the development of the children’s sensitivity in relation to the changing environment on the farm throughout the year. The curiosity, the desire to create and the commitment to learning were paramount. For more pictures and text in Norwegian see our projectblog: http://sanseligsamspill.blogspot.com/