Naturalist Essay Assignment

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On Thursday, during your regular lab/discussion time, all of us will take a nature walk through Pfeffer Park adjacent to Miami’s campus. [Meet in front of Peabody Hall.] Our path will take us through the campus, across a flat, well manicured park and eventually to a creek where we will actually walk upstream (in the water!) till we reach a place called the "bluffs." Along the way, besides getting your feet wet, we will discuss ecology, geology and human land use. More importantly, we hope you will be keeping your eyes open and think about how you personally connect to the world around you. What memories are triggered by this walk? What do you see? What do you feel?

Please write a two or three page, typewritten, naturalist essay based either on your field experience in Pfeffer Park, or another recent experience with nature in the Oxford landscape. As with all short papers, it helps to keep the topic tightly focused. All naturalist essays should take advantage of insights taken from a close observation of nature. We will be looking for a tight focus, detailed observation, good insights, and careful writing. Naturalist essays come in many forms, see page 10 of your reader for an example. We have placed this assignment first in the semester as a reminder that science is rooted in our relationship to the world around us. Make sure you visit the writing center before turning in this assignment. It is due 9/02/05.

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