Schoolyard Geology as a Bridge Between Urban Thinkers and the Natural World

Resource category: 
Articles and Special Issues
d'Alessio, M. A. (2012). Schoolyard Geology as a Bridge Between Urban Thinkers and the Natural World. Journal of Geoscience Education, 60(2), 106-113. DOI: 10.5408/11-246.1
Resource URL: 

Students who have a strong urban place-identity may perceive the natural world differently from many geoscience instructors. These urban thinkers have less experience in the natural world and are more comfortable in built environments. They may have subtle differences in cognitive and spatial skill development, interest level in the natural environment, comfort with field experiences, and possible fears of outdoor settings. Curriculum is more effective at reaching urban thinkers when it accounts for these differences. Since urban thinkers are more comfortable in the built environment, short excursions on campus or in the schoolyard can be a bridge between settings familiar to urban thinkers and geologic processes important for the study of geosciences. These mini–field experiences provide opportunities for students to ask questions about the world around them, especially if emphasis is placed on the physical processes that shape the urban landscape. Once students are familiar with the observations and interpretations appropriate for analyzing a familiar urban setting, they will be more receptive to learning about the natural world.


This page last updated 17 May 2019 - 2:41pm