Life Overlooked: An Environmental Arts Project

Kelly O'Brien, 2016
Vol. 22 No. 19 ISSN 1702-3548 (online)

This paper discusses Life Overlooked, an environmental arts project I designed and carried out with elementary school children at the Grove Community School in Toronto. Using art as the primary mode of inquiry this short-term, workshop based project got students to focus on endangered and overlooked animals and plants in Ontario. This essay outlines the different workshops (creative writing, batik, animation, dance, performance, photography and poetry) and explores how the students engaged with the various activities. My reflections illustrate how environmental arts education can create new and different possibilities for expanding young people’s knowledge of and relationships to local environments, as well as opportunities for them to think about larger environmental issues through connections with particular plants or animals.