In Search of the Eco-Teacher: Public School Edition

Sean Blenkinsop

Abstract


This paper uses an innovative building-less Canadian public elementary school and its accompanying large-scale research project to consider the characteristics that might be required of a teacher interested in working in an emergent, environmental, place- and community-based experiential public school setting. The six characteristics considered here—lateral thinking, holding the paradox, reflection, rhythm and shape, attention, and mediation of decolonization and re-inhabitation—are understood through having observed, interviewed, and interacted with the teachers at the school for the last 18 months and through extension. That is, these characteristics are offered not solely because the teachers possess them, but also from coming to understand where the teachers are being less than successful in their mandate and theorizing out towards the desired. The paper begins by setting a frame around the school project, and then working through the six characteristics that we are all still actively trying to achieve.

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Copyright © Canadian Journal of Environmental Education (CJEE) ISSN 1205-5352