The BEN helps educators share biomimicry with their students and facilitates the exchange of ideas and best practices. Join the network to connect with other biomimicry educators around the world.
The Biomimicry Education Network (BEN) is a global community of educators inspired to share biomimicry with their students. This AskNature Group serves as the “home base” for the BEN. Whether you are new to teaching biomimicry or an old pro, this is the place for educators to connect with each other, access a growing digital library of educational resources, and share their own creations with the community.
Who is the Network for?
This BEN is open to anyone teaching biomimicry or interested in incorporating biomimicry into their curriculum or education program. BEN members are diverse and include K-12 teachers, university faculty, and informal educators working with all age groups.
How to Join
To join the Network all you need is a (free) AskNature account. Once you are logged in, click “Join Group” at the top of the page. Once you have joined, you should also visit your Profile and fill out the section for “Educator Info” to share who and what you teach.
The forum is an open space for asking questions, sharing information, and discussing anything related to biomimicry in education with your fellow teachers. Please reserve the forum these conversations and take off-topic discussion to other groups. We also ask that members refrain from posting blatantly self-promotional or commercial messages. Contact the group admins if you have questions or concerns.
Why teach biomimicry?
Imagine every child growing up knowing how to read a tree like they’d read a book. Learning not just to identify different trees, or that they are used as building material and fuel, but how they are an amazing technology that stores energy from the sun, moves gallons of water a day without pumps, creates materials out of carbon in the air, and provides countless ecosystem services. When we learn to see this kind of technology in nature, our eyes are opened to new possibilities for our own designs. This is the power of biomimicry education at any age.
Biomimicry today is not just influencing design, it’s also revolutionizing education – offering a teachers a compelling way to teach biology, STEM subjects, creative problem-solving, and systems thinking. Biomimicry in education can provide:
- A compelling way to present science, technology, engineering, and math subjects.
- An interdisciplinary platform to connect subjects to one another, and to the real world beyond classroom walls.
- A tool to enhance creativity and problem-solving skills through design and project-based activities.
- A new way for young people to view and value the natural world; to see nature not just as something to learn about, but as something to learn from.
- A unique and powerful way to think and learn about sustainability.
How do I get started?
A great place to start is the Biomimicry Institute’s publication “Sharing Biomimicry With Young People.” In this document you’ll get an introduction to biomimicry along with ideas for how to bring this subject into your teaching. You’ll find many other great resources in the Resources section of AskNature.