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Walden; or, Life in the Woods. Henry David Thoreau First Edition

"Among those who give Thoreau credit for shaping their own thought were John Muir, who originated the modern environmental preservation movement; Theodore Roosevelt, who helped make preservation a function of the national government; and Rachel Carson, whose own writing helped form the modern conception of environment; Mahatma Gandhi; and Dr. Martin Luther King, linking Thoreau to the formation of the modern states of South Africa, India, and Pakistan, and the American Civil Rights movement."

Thoreau was born at this Minott House on Virginia Road on July 12, 1817. "Although he lived on the farm for only a short time, it provided both inspiration and subject matter for his writings. ...The picture they draw of life on Virginia Road provides a glimpse into early 19th-century Concord farm life as well as into the mind of Thoreau." (Thoreau Farm blog)

Why should we be in such desperate haste to succeed, and in such desperate enterprises? If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, how ever measured or far away.--"Walden'"or "Life in the Woods-- Where I Lived, and What I Lived For"

A peek into Thoreau's transcendentalist philosophy and social critique. His life in the woods wasn't just a silly experiment; he wanted to show people how chasing after the trivialities of life -- comfort, material things, etc. -- isn't satisfying. Life is meant for more.

Thoreau was curious to know how deep Walden Pond really was. "It is remarkable how long men will believe in the bottomlessness of a pond without taking the trouble to sound it." So, he surveyed it himself, an action which, of course, was accompanied by a philosophical reflection: "What if all ponds were shallow? Would it not react on the minds of men? I am thankful that this pond was made deep and pure for a symbol. While men believe in the infinite some ponds will be thought to be bottomless."

Approaches to Teaching Thoreau's Walden and Other Works

Earth Day Eco-friendly Fishies! // Not just for Earth Day. This Eco-Friendly preschool craft project is great for any day :)

An ecosystem in 3 bottles! Definitely going to being gathering supplies right now, so I can show it to my classroom in the fall! Maybe we could do this in groups, though it might end up being pretty expensive.

Sowing the Seeds of Place and Community-based Learning by Becs Boyd A Place and Community Based approach can be transformative for students and teachers, schools and communities. Making this approach work means taking a fresh look at the school community, the wider community and the environment...

Review: The Medea Hypothesis: Is Life on Earth Ultimately Self-Destructive? Authors: Peter Ward Publisher: Princeton Press Reviewed by Orlay Johnson This book might be more appropriately titled, “Mothers who Murder their Children.” It explores how Mother Earth periodically cleans house of the majority its biota. Sadly, the reference to Medea in the actual title is probably lost on most of us, unless you know more

Dam Removal as a Teaching Tool The removal of two dams on the Elwha River provides students with a fascinating case study that contains elements of a wide swath of topics covered in, and out of, the classroom; engineering, social studies, ecology, mathematics, history, and geology among others. It is up to educators to make sure that such an enormous and complex project with such far-reaching implications does not go by without being appropriately utilized as a teaching tool.