Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Pierce School visit

Post by Amanda Gallinat

This morning the Primack Lab visited the Pierce School in Brookline to talk about climate change. Richard, Caitlin and Amanda met with four 6th grade classes to discuss the work our lab has done showing the effects of spring warming on local plants, insects and birds. Then we got to hear about some of the climate change projects the 6th graders have been working on. These classes have spent the past month learning about climate change as part of Boston University's Project GLACIER.


  1. I cannot thank you enough for taking time out of your busy schedule to come to talk with my students yesterday. They were thrilled to hear from you and Caroline and Amanda. Each of your presentations made a real impact, and I anticipate that you will be hearing from some of them right here on this blog soon! Henry David Thoreau and climate change -- can't get much more interdisciplinary than that. Very cool! (Pardon the pun).

    It was important for the students to hear that more work needs to be done before people can confidently assert that there is a direct correlation with that what has happened with regard to ice-out and leaf-out times at Walden and climate change. My humanities colleagues were happy to hear the emphasis on the human-environment interaction in terms of the landscape of Concord changing so dramatically in terms of houses, roads, etc. since Thoreau's time. The fact that Caroline has unearthed assiduous records of the natural history of Mt. Desert Island, a place virtually untouched by HEI seems like it will aid in connecting the dots. And of course, my students were very impressed with Amanda's work with bird populations. Something about those owl eyes...Haunting!

    Thank you again for coming to talk with us, Richard! I look forward to our continued relationship in the name of educating middle- schoolers about the science and humanity of climate change.

  2. Wow that's a great comment. It's hard to schedule, but BU faculty, graduate students, and our teacher colleagues all learning about how students learn about climate change together, is really the heart of the GLACIER program. I was honored to be there and delighted at the thoughtfulness, knowledge, and wisdom exhibited by the students. I"m also glad I got to be there to balance the students' exposures to terrestrial climate change topics with what's going on in the other three quarters of the world! It was a lot of fun, and it had been way too long since I'd been wandering around inside of PIerce (I always get lost). All the best and thanks for setting this up.

    Les Kaufman
    Professor of Biology
    Boston University Marine Program
    GLACIER faculty