Investigating Where We Live (IWWL) is a summer outreach program at the National Building Museum, designed for students aged 12-16 from the D.C. metropolitan area. Participants learn to use creative writing and photography as a means of understanding and describing D.C. neighborhoods. At the end of the program, participants will share what they have learned by creating a public exhibition. In 2010, students will focus on the neighborhoods of Petworth, Southwest Waterfront, and Trinidad.
One very cool aspect of the "A Stroll Through Petworth" section of the 2010 IWWL exhibit is the flower planting interactive. Visitors can write comments on flower petals made of construction paper and pipe cleaners. They take their comment flowers and plant them in the flower boxes beneath a large tree that our students painted on one of the exhibit walls and decorated with construction paper leaves. The tree and flower pots mirror a picture in the exhibit taken by one of our students. Over the last seven months we have watched visitors turn the leaves on the tree into their own comment book. Our visitors have used the flowers for sharing comments and posting their thoughts about the IWWL neighborhoods. Many have tucked their flowers into the tree's leaves, so we followed their lead and started gluing them onto the tree! Check out the images and comments below and see the Petworth tree come to life!