How well do you know your place?


Any place that humans live in has to have a regular water supply.  This quiz asks you to think about where your water comes from and where it goes.


Bioregional Studies is the bioregional component of the curriculum of the Axe Handle Academy. What we gain by a bioregional approach is that students learn to think about the consequences of their actions on the earth, its resources and its other living inhabitants.  

1.  Define the limits of your bioregion.  Be able to justify the boundaries you choose.

2.  Trace the water you drink from precipitation to tap and from tap to ultimate disposal.

3.  How many days until the moon is full (plus or minus a couple of days)?

4.  Describe the soil around your home.

5.  What are the primary subsistence techniques of the culture(s) that live in your area?

6.  Name five native edible plants in your bioregion and their season(s) of availability.

7.  From what direction do winter storms generally come in your region?

8.  Where does your garbage go?

9.  How long is the growing season where you live?

10.  Name five trees in your area.  Which of them are native?

11.  Name five resident and any migratory birds in your area.

12.  What is the land use history by humans in your bioregion during the past century?

13.  What primary geological events or processes influenced the land forms where you live?

14.  What species have become extinct in your area?

15.  What are the major plant associations in your region?

16.  From where you are reading this, point north.

17.  What spring wildflower is consistently among the first to bloom where you live?

18.  What kinds of rocks and minerals are found in your bioregion?

19.  Were the stars out last night?

20.  Name some other beings (nonhuman) which share your bioregion.

21.  How many people live next door to you?  What are their names?

22.  How much gasoline and other fossil fuels do you use a week, on the average?

23.  What kind of energy costs you the most money?  What kind of energy is it?  What portion of your use of energy does it account for?

24.  What plans are there for development of energy or mineral resources in your bioregion?

25.  What people are indigenous to your region?

26.  Distinguish between inhabitory and transient populations of people in your region.

27.  What languages are spoken in your region?  Which are indigenous and which are immigrant languages?

28.  Name seven prominent land forms in your region.  Whose language is used for those names?

29.  Identify the political/governmental boundaries that divide your bioregion.

30.  Evaluate the effects of these divisions on the life of your region.

31.  Identify one other bioregion and compare and contrast it with your own.

32.  Give five aspects of your life that are independent of your bioregion.  Where are they supported by the earth elsewhere?

To do well on a test like this a student will have to integrate knowledge from many fields such as biology, meteorology, earth science, and geography.  But the student will also need to integrate that scientific knowledge with history, anthropology, language arts, Indian studies, and social studies.  But even that is not enough.  The student will have to apply that knowledge to his own day-to-day life.  He or she will have to think about such things as plumbing, the city water and sewer system, the daily weather, and resource use in his or her own home, school and community.

In our present curriculum a student can possibly become well versed in each of these separate subject areas but would still not be able to answer most of the questions on this test.  Of course this is only an example of what we mean by a bioregional perspective in the Axe Handle Academy.  We propose that virtually all of the studies in the sciences, mathematics, and social studies will be organized around bioregional questions without losing any of the essential knowledge we now require of our students.


the academy

the curriculum


life of the land

comparative culture studies

responsive communication