The Walden Soundscape is an award-winning digital project and companion website to my dissertation that aims to immerse viewers and listeners in Walden Pond’s soundscape. The website is a toolbox for educators and students to engage in a natural soundscape alongside works of literature that inspired early activism in the wilderness preservation movement such as Thoreau’s Walden and Emerson’s Nature.
The website is made up of three sections. The first section contains immersive stop-motion animated videos including guided walks through Walden Woods and meditative experiences reflecting on the pond in real time. A second section features an ArcGIS story map of the pond for individual exploration of the sonic environment surrounding the pond in the woods, the marsh grasses, and by the neighboring railroad tracks. The third section of the website features a podcast that uses sounds and critical listening methods to educate listeners about Sound Studies, Thoreau, climate change, and Transcendentalism.
Teaching Climate Change in the Humanities is a growing website developed by members of the Ecocriticism Public Working Group at the Graduate Center, CUNY. The website is for anyone interested in teaching climate change in the humanities and social sciences, offering resources and reading lists that can be integrated into a college course syllabus. The resources are intended to be useful for humanities and literature instructors who are interested in adding climate change and/or climate justice units to their courses, as well as for instructors in the sciences and social sciences who might want to include a discussion of literary texts in their classes.
My digital pedagogy draws from a variety of approaches to make texts accessible and to build community inside and outside the classroom. Students write beyond the class and for a public audience through class blog posts and collaborative digital projects, and these assignments bring up questions of privacy, surveillance, and security, which I use as opportunities to discuss best practices. As students learn to secure and control their digital identities, they also strengthen their writing and acquire the tools they need to write effectively and for different audiences. In ongoing digital humanities projects that utilize media such as BuzzFeed, DropBox, Twitter, and WordPress, students inspire and respond to one another (e.g. using a class hashtag) and draw connections between literary studies and the sociopolitical issues that they are most invested in.
In addition to managing a publicly-sourced bibliography of Progressive Pedagogy texts and a public HASTAC group on active learning, I have presented my digital pedagogy at numerous conferences, including: “Decolonizing Technologies, Reprogramming Education,” HASTAC, University of British Columbia, Vancouver (2019); “Digital Democracies,” Simon Fraser University, Vancouver (2019); Modern Language Association (MLA), Chicago, IL (2018); and Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA), Baltimore, MD (2017).