Society is becoming increasingly separated from nature. People are also becoming more distanced from science and the ways that we come to understand the natural world. This is especially true of urban and rural youth who have little contact with nature and who may have negative experiences with learning science in schools. To provide a positive experience that associates science with activities that are enjoyable and meaningful to youth, three collaborating organizations created a unique program – Sound Scientists: Gear Up with Music.
In this week-long project, scientists presented aspects of field biology and the study of nature to urban and rural middle school children and provided them the means to express their experiences in music, mainly rap music and spoken word poetry. The participating groups – the Research Ambassador Program, GEAR UP at The Evergreen State College, and Sound Adventures – provided content, structure, technical support, and evaluation for this endeavor. This experiential and discovery-based educational program took place July 12 – 16, 2004 at The Evergreen State College, in Olympia, Washington.
Listen to samples of the project below: