Our Program

Posted on Tuesday 11 November 2008

Our yearlong course consists of one Saturday Exploration and one Monday Enrichment Evening per month. The evening speakers prepare us for the Saturday explorations where we go out in small groups into our bioregion, with a concentration on our own watershed. While we provide wonderful guides and materials, these explorations are designed for each person to make his/her own connection.

As the year progresses, through every season, in every weather, and through the different ecological zones, we become more familiar with our place. Every month we focus on a different theme, and by using different lenses, we develop skill in using all of our senses. Through facilitated exercises we learn to express our connection with our sense of place. And by experiencing this together, we form community, deepening our roots with those around us.

The yearly program starts in May, however, new participants are welcome to join the course in progress, at a prorated fee. Register now or experience us for one month for a $35 guest fee. This includes our Monday enrichment evening, from 7-9 pm at the Conexions Center, 1023 Corporation Way, Palo Alto and our Saturday exploration at one of our local parks. You can also find more information, including the schedule, here. Or contact Judy Cronin at 650-938-9300 x12.

Joanna @ 2:19 pm
Filed under: Archives
Local Hero Award

Posted on Tuesday 2 September 2008

We are excited to announce that Exploring a Sense of Place and founder Karen Harwell are the subject of the Palo Alto Media Center’s Local Heroes program. Karen was one of five people to receive the award. An in depth look at Exploring a Sense of Place and Karen’s work was aired on the Palo Alto Cable Channel. To view the video click here.

Joanna @ 1:42 pm
Filed under: Latest News
Three-Day Training in June, 2009

Posted on Tuesday 24 June 2008

Tunitas Creek

Three-Day Training in June, 2009

Tunitas Creek Ranch near Half Moon Bay will open its farm for 20 participants June 19 – 21, 2009. The goal of the training program is for participants to:

  • Be inspired to create their own exploration of the place where they live
  • Experience explorations of place in this ecosystem as examples for their own ecosystem
  • Become well oriented with the guidebook
  • See themselves as part of a shared learning and initiating community
  • Develop a plan for taking next steps.

Through a concentrated weekend of first hand experience with local guides, we will learn how to read the landscape of place through its deep time geologic story, weather patterns, water cycles, plant and animal communities. We will experience strategies for teaching nature awareness. We will also learn how the indigenous communities sustainably nourished themselves with native plants and animals, and the importance today of choosing local, organic and seasonal food by spending time in the garden where greens and vegetables for our dinner were grown. In the evening, with guidance from a NASA scientist, we will experience our place in the cosmos, orienting us to the stars, planets and constellations of the night sky. Throughout the weekend participants will be relating these experiences to how they apply in their own watershed or bioregion. By the final morning, working with the Exploring a Sense of Place guidebook and notebook materials, participants will develop initial plans for their own local explorations and learn how to connect with one another online to share ideas.

For more information please contact our Director of Outreach, Laurel Smith:

Phone 650-938-9300, x17 or email lsmith@exploringsenseofplace.org

Treat the Earth well. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children. Ancient Native American Proverb

Additional Workshop Information




admin @ 11:14 pm
Filed under: Archives
Explorer Group started in San Diego

Posted on Thursday 18 October 2007

Our seeds are spreading and taking root in beautiful San Diego. Chris Khoury and Linda Corey have started a group exploring the San Dieguito River Valley modeled after our guide book “Exploring a Sense of Place”. They have graciously allowed us to publish their article for the newsletter of the San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy announcing the start of the program. Check it out at A Journey Down the San Dieguito River. We will keep in close touch with the group.

Joanna @ 11:06 am
Filed under: Latest News
Some Sense of Place Quotes

Posted on Thursday 4 May 2006

  • Treat the Earth well. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children. Ancient Native American Proverb
  • To be rooted is perhaps the most important but least understood need of the human soul. Simone Weil
  • We did not come into this world. We came out of it, like buds out of branches and butterflies out of cocoons. We are a natural product of this earth, and if we turn out to be intelligent beings, then it can only be because we are fruits of an intelligent earth, which is nourished in turn by an intelligent system of energy. Lyall Watson
  • It is not enough to just “love nature” or want to “be in harmony with Gaia.” Our relation to the natural world takes place in a place, and it must be grounded in information and experience. Gary Snyder
  • A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise. Aldo Leopold
Joanna @ 10:20 am
Filed under: Memorable Quotes

Posted on Tuesday 28 February 2006

“Exploring a Sense of Place” offers an opportunity for people to create new patterns in their lives by making themselves available to new experiences, being imprinted by and becoming more intimate with the natural ecosystem in which they live their lives.

This is a course that offers a chance to restore your connection with the particular place where you live, its natural dynamics, systems and processes, while gaining an appreciation for your powerful impact on them so that you can consciously choose how to participate in the world around you.

Joanna @ 9:40 pm
Filed under: Latest News