Elements in Teaching Biophilia

What follows is a list of elements in teaching Biophilia. Note that not all of these approaches are used always, some of them may not be practical for you, and very importantly there is no rule as to the order in which they should be implemented; this depends for example on the songapp in question.

Co-teaching. Ideally all the teachers should work together on carrying out the various activities presented.

An introduction of the musical / natural / human themes. This could take the form of a short lecture collaborated on by the teaching team, a video on the topic, a brainstorming session, a hand-out etc. Note that if the idea is that students discover the ideas themselves this part could be put later in the process or might be unnecessary. The ideas in the M/N/H/C/ BC texts are useful here, and many of the videos provided as well. This is the ideal place to open the students’ eyes to the connections between the musical and scientific concepts.

A focused moment of listening to the songs or viewing the videos. Sit still, mind your breathing and focus on the experience at hand – either directly without any preparation, or possibly with the opening question for the songapp in mind. For the more accessible songs this might be a good way to start, for others this could be left for later.

Kid-in-own-space. A significant amount of time should be devetod to allowing students to experiment with the songapps on their own with headphones, allowing individual creativity to thrive.

Products. Make sure products of work can be shared, any art works, writing or songs created should have a venue for being shared with the universe.

Socratic discussion circles. To seal and finalise the experience a period of settling down to discuss, share, listen and digest can be valuable. The best approach here is the simple one of sitting in a circle and taking time to listen to everybody’s experiences, views and thoughts. In some cases there may be questions that will call for urgent resolution, in others this will be a more free flowing exchange.