Creating a Teaching Landscape
The project was funded through the 2014 Partnership Grant Program from the Blackstone Heritage Corridor, Inc. and funding provided by Eugene Bernat, Fisherville Redevelopment, LLC.
Located in South Grafton on the Blackstone River and Canal, the Fisherville Mill Redevelopment Site, Mill Villages Park, and Living Systems Laboratory (LSL) have become a durable regional asset for tourism, education and research focused on the ecology and industrial history of the greater Blackstone River Valley. The site, besides being the focus of an innovative approach to site remediation and redevelopment, has many unique historical, cultural and natural assets, including the remnants of a canal lock, a beautiful step-dam, and gorgeous wetland and open water views. Central to the site is the LSL, an engineered ecosystem that employs innovative bioremediation practices and applied ecology using diverse living systems to remove the historical contaminants from the Blackstone Canal.
The "Creating A Teaching Landscape" project was designed to highlight the unique industrial and ecological history of the Blackstone River as well as to engage communities and researchers in an interactive learning environment. The goals of the project included:
- The creation of an interpretive master plan for the Fisherville Mill Site, the Mill Villages Park, the Living Systems Laboratory (LSL), and historic and environmental resources;
- The preparation of curriculum for local schools and universities; and
- Conducting physical improvements to the LSL, including the installation of a plant nursery to propagate flowers and ornamental plants demonstrating the use of the River's impaired water.
View any the following links to see the key documents produced as part of this project:
Post-Industrial Flora: A Field Guide to the Plants of Fisherville Mill
- 1st Edition by Nicholas D. Bernat
- Guide inventories sixty-six species - one per page - including characteristics and photos of each.
- Hillary Collins, Jillian Ferguson, Jeff Frisch, Jr., The Conway School of Design, Spring 2015
Living Systems Field Trip Curriculum & Resource Guides
- Biodiversity - Grade Levels - Middle School, High School (PDF)
- Food Webs and Energy Transfer - Grade Levels - Middle School, High School (PDF)
- Nature and Human Activity - Grade Levels - Elementary School (PDF) (can be modified for Middle and High School)
- Life Cycles and Structures - Grade Level - Elementary School (PDF)
- Creating a Teaching Landscape - A Landscape Master Plan for Fisherville Mill for the Town of Grafton, Massachusetts (PDF)
- Creating a Teaching Landscape - A Landscape Plan for Fisherville Mill (PDF)
- Living Systems Field Trip Curriculum - Biodiversity (PDF)
- Living Systems Field Trip Curriculum - Food Webs and Energy Transfer (PDF)
- Living Systems Field Trip Curriculum - Life Cycles and Structures (PDF)
- Living Systems Field Trip Curriculum - Nature and Human Activity (PDF)