With students of all ages back at school, Project Bookmark Canada is pleased to share the results of our own recent collaborative educational initiative, kindly funded by the Good Foundation Inc. and created for Bookmark by students from the Knowledge Integration program at the University of Waterloo.
The Bachelor of Knowledge Integration is a flexible and challenging transdisciplinary program for creative and diversely talented students that offers the opportunity for students to explore interests on both sides of the traditional arts and science divide.
Each year, as part of their course work, the fourth-year KI students create a design solution for a real-world client. Past clients include the Centre for International Governance Innovation and the Ontario Science Centre. Last fall, we were delighted when the class of 2013–2014 chose to work with Project Bookmark Canada.
Over the course of the school year, through a series of meetings, presentations and site visits, the KI designers assessed our needs and then pitched their potential contributions. The project we agreed upon was an online exhibit to accompany an existing installation: Terry Griggs’ Rogues’ Wedding, Bookmarked in Owen Sound.
The students at KI saw that the true potential for exploration and learning only begins at the Bookmark installation itself. When readers stand before a Bookmark, they experience a small piece of Canadian geography through the lens of a fragment of a story. With the aid of technology, we can widen our visitors’ scope of investigation to the larger area that hosts the Bookmark, and also take them deeper into the featured story or poem. We can even lead them directly to the nearest place to pick up the book—on foot to the local bookstore or library, or via the web to buy an electronic copy. And so these young designers set out to create an example of what these in-depth resources could be.
And now we encourage you to look again at Terry Griggs Rogues’ Wedding and its setting and host community. Here you’ll find readings and interviews with the author, some history behind the story and the setting, and a variety of things to do and explore in and around Owen Sound.
The exhibit will serve as a pilot to showcase to potential host communities, partners and funders, as we build further and more complex resources for all Bookmarks, expanding the potential and reach of the Project Bookmark Canada network.
Thank you to the Good Foundation Inc. for providing the necessary funding to fuel the students’ investigations and creativity. Thanks to the generous Terry Griggs for her excellent book and for playing along. And thank you to supervising professor Ed Jernigan and Senior Design Demonstrator Paul McKone for inspiration and co-ordination, and to all the members of the 2013–2014 KI design team for bringing your skills and new perspectives to our initiative. We look forward to seeing what’s next for all these young thinkers, designers—and readers: