" BES Project Abstracts 2005
Institute of Ecosystem Studies

2005 BES Annual Meeting Presentation and Poster Abstracts

The Integration of the Environment across the Curriculum at an Urban High School: A Case Study

Abstract: This presentation reports on a case study of one Baltimore City high school as it attempts to integrate an environmental theme across subject areas. The case took place over the course of one academic year and is of particular interest because of the relationship between this school-wide theme and the larger school climate of testing and accountability. Drawing from the environmental education movementís evolving goals for student learning, this study uses a conceptual framework in which teachersí and administratorsí goals for student learning are central to curriculum implementation. Sources of data primarily include teacher interviews, classroom observations, and participant observations during professional development activities. Findings include areas in which the environmental theme was visible across the school context, as well as areas in which it was invisible. Emergent themes include the impact of participant positionality upon an individualís experience of the theme as well as the influence of goal misalignment throughout the institution. Implications include increased appreciation for the role of individuals and communities in curriculum implementation, as well as a reconsideration of environmentally-oriented professional development.