eLearning Co-creation Community Partnerships Dauphin Island Sea Lab Trashman-of-War
Heidi has several years of experience teaching online at multiple institutions, and technology plays an important role in her teaching. She assigns geocaches, curates content, hosts virtual events, leads video conferences, creates multimedia digital chapbooks, explores writing with Voyant Tools, crowdsources interpretations for aesthetic provocations, and includes meaningful micro digital service learning engagements, among other applications. Heidi is committed to innovation and adaptation, and she has responded to Covid-19 by enrolling in the BAMA-Online Teaching course as well as earning a professional certificate in eLearning Design from Flex Labs at Dun Laoghaire Institute Of Art Design + Technology.
Heidi facilitates her students' higher-order learning by co-creating the learning experience and including creative engagement. Her students have gone on from her mentoring to enroll in graduate programs; launch reading series and publishing projects; enter professional employment; receive national fellowships, including the Fulbright; and win book prizes. She has elaborated on her practices in "Metaphors We Teach By," (Beyond the Workshop, Kingston University Press 2012) and at AWP presentations, including "The Natural Writer: Unschooling the Creative Writing Classroom."
Heidi develops relationships with local organizations, providing her students with opportunities for outward facing experiential learning. Her community partners include Alabama Audubon Society, Birmingham Audubon Mountain Workshop, The Black Warrior Riverkeeper, ChemWaste, Ruffner Wildlife Refuge, and The Hurricane Creekkeeper, among others.
DAUPHIN ISLAND SEA LAB PARTNERSHIP
Heidi worked with her graduate assistant Josh Dugat to create a partnership with the Dauphin Island Sea Lab, producing a student-weekend of creative engagements on the island. Events included writing sessions associated with the facility and locality; a reading and talk with visiting poet Kwoyah Maples; collaboration with several Tuscaloosa book and print-making artists to host a community arts print-making workshop; a luncheon discussion between University of Alabama and University of South Alabama MFA students; a panel discussion between poets and scientists; and a culminating open mic.
Members of Heidi's Fall 2019 graduate Ecopoetics course created a trash jellyfish for a collaborative community-arts poetry installation. Football-tailgaters were invited to create word-banks from supplied trash, compose short “I am” poems and attach them to the jellyfish’s tentacles. The resultant Whitmanian song of collective identification reflects both our shared responsibility for excessive waste and possibility for future transformation.