Permaculture is a culture. It has its own language, thinking & people. Most cultures over time develop ways to transmit their beliefs and thinking to their children early on. I don't think we should be any different. While all of us know growing up around permaculture is ideal, many of us know many kids don't naturally sponge up some things; they need more. Usually they need it to be fun, active & the way they like to learn. Games (and rituals in general) are how cultures pass on meaning and embed it into future generations. Games are an intrinsic component of culture. I propose we make a list of possible Permaculture Games to play with children or adults, inside and outside the house, & with props & with no props.
I have seen several board games and of course the permaculture playing cards (that I desperately want but have no spare money to get right now) that relate to permaculture and could make great games to play with children to get them learning about it. Having designed games, I expect it would be possible to design a lot of different games based on permaculture ideas. They could even potentially have market value if the artistry and design was of quality. Off the top of my head, the game of Wildcraft comes to mind. It is made to be played with children (has child friendly artwork) and teaches about how wild plants can be used to help both with their edibility and their medicinal natures in a fun manner. I am sure I will think of a few more with a little time.
JEN: WOW - this book list is MEATY!! THANK YOU!! I will totally check these out!! The games are a little scant. (Sidenote: The article on those games juxtapositioned it with a poorly managed classroom of 1-1 computer to student ratio. I teach in that context. The key is to have them work together & have a timetable with checkpoints and public accountability.)
I'm also thinking non-board games, non-sitting games, but active physical games as well.
D.LOGAN: We have Wildcraft but seem to get more scratch out of foraging in the garden these days. They LOVE to pick and eat food in there (but not at the table!)
Well Matt: About the games in permaculture, I find if they are carefully selected for learning they are brilliant however with the adults I work with, they are a bit different. When students feel very safe in a class they like to be challenged with deeper questions such as "What would be the consequences of that"?", and "how would that work in another culture?" Some don't want to play games...there are always a few who from time to time want a clear lecture which moves their knowledge forward. Adult learners will accept these challenges when they can see the relevance - and relevance is critical. Simple statements, which I guess you use are" This is important to you understanding and work because....
You can structure these responses through games. And I need to plan them carefully.
Mostly I use a variety of methods of cater for all types of learners and change these, I hope seamlessly, through a lesson and a day.
Your experience is very valuable Matt. Thanks for sharing
We're building a permaculture video game for all ages at www.seedsthegame.com , and we're inviting anyone interested in helping us build it to come out to our game jams and join our team. The next one is this weekend at the Shed in Pasadena.