Heavy Metal Environmental Education: Part 2 of 3

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It’s March in the Wisconsin Northwoods. Sure, the days are longer and the temps are getting up to the mid-20’s, but the nights are still dipping well below zero. This is the testing time where even the strongest Winter enthusiasts stretch their endurance and quelling their longing for Spring for just a little longer. It is here where a booster of Winter appreciation could go a long way. The brutal cold, the barren dry landscape, the long nights… how onerous! Unless… unless we flipped winter 180 degrees. Enter Finnish metal band Wintersun!

This band is especially applicable to my setting on the top of Wisconsin, where just over the MI border (a stone’s throw away) were Finnish immigrants not even 100 years ago, coming to the Michigan UP for the copper mining opportunities.  They left a legacy of their heritage on the landscape and in the MI community. In fact, Finnish may still be heard on a stroll through the down towns of Watersmeet, Bruce Crossing or Land O’ Lakes. Point being, Scandinavian cultures such as these have long been developing mechanisms to live and thrive in winter, metal being no exception. You have to wonder, if any of the immigrants mining copper were in the Mighian UP today, would they be rockin’ Wintersun?

Continue reading “Heavy Metal Environmental Education: Part 2 of 3”


Heavy Metal Environmental Education: Part 1 of 3

Ensiferum visits St. Paul, MN!

In a recent UWSP course I’m taking, Environmental Education Theory and Practice, we’re discussing strategies for cultivating a sense of empathy and connection to a place. In a well-done EE curriculum, empathy and connection are the foundation, to then make space for more specific knowledge and facts about the environment. It makes sense… why would anyone care to learn a bunch of ecological facts without the framework of a personal connection to what they’re learning? What if that connection is established through metal music? Curious? Read on…

Continue reading “Heavy Metal Environmental Education: Part 1 of 3”