This Compassionate Life: Podcasts to Spark Discussions In High School
Charles is a poet, writer and co-director of the Spring Creek Project for Ideas, Nature and the Written Word at Oregon State University in Corvallis, OR. He has had several poems read on Garrison Keillor’s The Writers Almanac.
The many insights that allow Charles to write empathetically about bugs, building and being in the natural world come from acute observation of the world around him and his long tenure as a gardener for the Benton County Courthouse in Corvallis, OR.
Charles Goodrich, Part 1 - 23:30 min (Stream this podcast)
In part one, he addresses flies, bees, aphids – scorned creatures all – and responds to questions about instinct, forgotten places and “security and adventure.”
Charles Goodrich, Part 2 - 23:13 min (Stream this podcast)
In part two, he seeks out spiders and gives the vulture a voice, and responds to questions about restoration, which he views as "restory-ing," and the relationship between science and philosophy.
Download Goodrich's Classroom Guide for Teachers
Linda is a chef, writer, and food and farms advocate in Portland, Oregon, who seeks to bring fresh, local food into school cafeterias. She teaches life lessons in botany, environmental appreciation, food education and character development in a school garden.
Linda Colwell, Part 1 - 19:25 min (Stream this podcast)
Linda Colwell presents a case for a healthy "civic environment" as one that includes community spaces like school gardens, or other natural areas, that teach us about relationships. She describes how gardens and gardening instruct, and links this concept to the issue of who should own our food and the seeds from which our plant food comes. She concludes by responding to a question about finding balance, and relates how a food system is part of that balancing act.
Linda Colwell, Part 2 - 18:19 min (Stream this podcast)
Linda Colwell prefaces this episode with a story about food being alive, and then questions our disconnect from our food system as well as the truism that most of us don't know where our food comes from any more. She characterizes what she sees as a spiritual dimension to eating, epitomized by a 2008 pilgrimage she led to Transylvania called "Theology of the Table," and sheds new light on the term "food activist/ism."
Bob is a Yale Forestry School graduate and Fullbright Fellow who founded the Xerces Society which protects wildlife through the conservation of invertebrates. His book, Wintergreen, won the John Burroughs Medal for Distinguished Nature Writing.
Bob lives and writes in Gray's River in SW Washington. "Place," he says of himself, "is what takes me out of myself, out of the limited scope of human activity, but this is not misanthropic. A sense of place is a way of embracing humanity among all of its neighbors. It is an entry into a larger world."
Bob Pyle, Part 1 - 28:05 min (Stream this podcast)
In part one, Bob asks us to train our attention on other organisms, and responds to questions that address the "movement of water over territory" and the "extinction of experience."
Bob Pyle, Part 2 - 25:48 min (Stream this podcast)
In part two, Bob draws a startling comparison between the nature writing of Michael Pollan in “The Botany of Desire” and Jay McInerny in “Bright Lights, Big City”. He answers questions about his passion for butterflies and Darwin’s concept of a “tangled bank”.
Download Pyle's Classroom Guide for Teachers
[User Group: Administration, Parents, Teachers]
[Grade: Lower, Middle, Upper]
[Subject: Moral Development and Character Education]