BIRD BRAIN's four inter-related components - free site specific out door performances, navigational dance workshops for students and the general public, panel discussions on issues of migration, navigation and conservation, and the web site - link the worlds of science/conservation and dance/art.
BIRD BRAIN's community activities have developed significantly over the course of our migrations. In 2003, we introduced a new Educational Resource Guide that relates the study of the migration of ducks and geese along the Mississippi River flyway with experiences in movement, writing, and visual art. This guide is designed for students in the third through sixth grades. Schools in Corpus Christi, Houston, Dallas, Cedar Rapids, and Minneapolis are contributing artwork and observations during fall 2003 and will participate in BIRD BRAIN Ducks and Geese dance performances in spring 2004 when the company migrates through their cities.
A special section of the BIRD BRAIN web site provides students with the opportunity to share their experiences in the form of journals, videos and photos with other schools and the general public.
Goals of the Educational Resource Guide
to lead students to connect their own navigational skills to those of animals
to use movement, dance, writing, and art as tools to teach students about bird navigation and physiology
to help students become aware of their environment and to become educated stewards of the environment through both scientific and artistic exercises
to use the interconnectedness of migratory bird habitats as a metaphor for how our own communities are linked
This guide has been developed as a collaboration among Jennifer Monson, Artistic Director of the Bird Brain Navigational Dance Project; Jane Greenberg, Teacher Resource Center, Bell Museum of Natural History, College of Natural Resources, University of Minnesota; and Susan Rotilie, Associate Director, School Tours and Family Programs, Walker Art Center. Additional content has been contributed by Mary deLaittre, the Environmental Literacy Project, and Joanne Toft, classroom teacher, Marcy Open School, Minneapolis. Materials from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology are used with permission. A complete listing is included in the Sources and Resources section.