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Connecting Social and Natural Ecologies Through a Curriculum of Giving for Student Wellbeing and Engagement

  • Thomas W. Nielsen (a1) and Jennifer S. Ma (a2)

Abstract

Using hermeneutic phenomenology to aid the reader ‘experience’ the data collected, this study reports on 18 college students, 4 staff members and the author's trip to a remote island on the Great Barrier Reef. It is a story of the (re)discovery of the social and natural ecologies that bind us together, and of how explicit teaching and learning about these ecologies can make a difference to young people's abilities to consciously be part of, contribute to, and sustain these ecologies. A grounded theory of five dimensions of giving (to self, others, communities, environment, and the whole) is offered as a beginning framework from which to imbue teaching and learning with meaning and social concern.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: Jennifer Ma, Centre for Mental Health Research, 63 Eggleston Road, The Australian National University, Canberra ACT 2601Australia. Email: jennifer.ma@anu.edu.au

References

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Australian Journal of Environmental Education
  • ISSN: 0814-0626
  • EISSN: 2049-775X
  • URL: /core/journals/australian-journal-of-environmental-education
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