Seeing the Environment Through A Child’s Eyes

Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies & Leadership, Education and Athletics in Partnership (LEAP), New Haven, CT
Fall 1998
For my Master’s project, I wanted to explore how youth perceived their community and urban environment using photography. Over several weeks, I taught basic photography basic concepts to a small group of 9-12 year old girls in New Haven, CT and asked them to document the world around them. My original interest in this project was to explore if the youth found making and sharing their photographs an empowering experience. However, by the end of the project my focus shifted, as I was humbled by how their images and thoughts offered me a deeper understanding of their unique perspectives and relationship to “nature.” Their photographs forced me to confront my own preconceptions of how urban youth perceive their community and environment. At the end of the project, the students exhibited their photos at their elementary school.