Circles of learning : creating opportunity to give voice and bear witness to self, others, and nature in environmental education
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Cameron, Laura C.
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SubjectCircles of learning; Circle; council; communication; transformation; environmental education; phenomenological; emotional; ecological identity; self-awareness; listening; community; connection; nature; wonder
By asking, “Is Circle (also known as “council”) an effective methodology for environmental education?”, this thesis explores the significance of creating Circles of learning as a communication process with implications for environmental education and personal transformation. From a phenomenological perspective, I have positioned my research as an autobiographical narrative of what it is to be both researcher (observer) and research instrument (facilitator & participant) as well as creating the conditions for a case study of Circle participants. Further, I held interviews with Circle practitioners and instructors. The premise of Circle is to create an intentional listening space for each person to have a voice and be witnessed as they tell their stories. This paper provides some insight here, and explores how Circle can become an effective means of exploring ecological identity, self-awareness, relationship-building, a sense of community, emotional connections to nature and a sense of wonder within the process.
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