Goethe Garden, flower morphology and pedagogy

|   Botanik, Ökologie, Landschaft

João Felipe Ginefra Toni

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe came to Weimar in 1775. After he had moved into his new home just outside the city in the Ilm-Aue, he devoted himself with increasing intensity to garden design and botany.

When he moved into a representative residential house on the Weimarer Frauenplan a few years later, another garden plot came into Goethe's possession. Both gardens provided illustrative material for his botanical research on living plants.

The aim of this doctoral project is to re-examine Goethe's dynamic view of the diversity of plants in connection with the didactics of botany and environmental education. In addition to investigating the use of the history and philosophy of science in science teaching, the project will create and utilize a Goethe Garden as a didactic implementation on the topic of "Metamorphosis of Plants". Students in the upper school will be able to learn, both by visual thinking and by manual work, subjects such as Goetheanistic flower morphology and ecology, evolution of plant development (evo-devo), systematics of flowering plants and botanical illustration. In addition, the project aims to generate experience in school community interaction with science in general and with Goethe's morphological approach in particular.

The first results of this approach to Goetheanistic flower morphology in university and college education in South America were recently published in volume 16 of the botanical journal Chagual.

Goethe's garden at Frauenplan
Brassica flower
Students in the Goethe Garden of the Rudolf Steiner School Zurich Oberland, Wetzikon