Van Rees was recognized for developing an innovative field course that combines art and ecosystems that allows students to connect with the landscape in a different way.
"I believe this award signifies that it's okay to follow your creative ideas, even if they do appear crazy, as they can lead to wonderful opportunities for innovation and learning," said Van Rees. "This award indicates to me that others also feel this way and, more broadly, that there is a real interest for combining science and art into teaching as well as experiential learning as an important component in a student's education."
In his class students spend time carefully observing the landscape, then drawing or painting what they see. They also learning to make their own pigment from the organic material in the landscape which they use in their art.
Van Rees will receive his award alongside four other winners on June 18 at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario at the 2014 STLHE Annual Conference. Each of the five winners will receive a two-year membership in STLHE as well as funds for travel and registration costs to attend the annual D2L conference, FUSION 2014, in Nashville, and the STLHE Annual Conference.
Van Rees also joins past University of Saskatchewan recipients of this award Jay Wilson (College of Education) and Sandra Bassendowski (College of Nursing).
For more information, contact:
Instructional Design Assistant
Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching Effectiveness
University of Saskatchewan