i•m•science investigations entail using
interviews and observations to collect data, and reporting your
findings to our online i•m•science databases.
The databases are used for education and research.
Why the name “i•m•science?”
i•m•science means I Am Science. Youth and community
members can contribute to science in important ways.
i•m•science means Information Mosaics science.
The small "i" has become a universal symbol for information.
The "m" refers to the mosaics of plants, planting practices,
people, and cultures in community and other gardens.
Finally, i•m•science means International Mosaics science.
We invite youth, gardeners, and volunteers from all over the world
to share their knowledge of plants and growing practices, and of
the role gardens play in their communities.
Why participate in i•m•science?
i•m•science investigations can be conducted for two purposes:
to add to the online databases and as educational activities for
youth and adults.
Through sharing the results and photos of your i•m•science
investigations using the online
databases, you are helping to create a beautiful website that is
used for education and research. You also can contact Garden Mosaics
about posting the database reports from your city or region on your
own website, so that they will help spread the word about your own
i•m•science youth programs
Through conducting i•m•science investigations with
elder gardeners, youth form positive relationships with local role
models. They also develop interviewing, observation, and data recording
skills, and make important contributions to their community.
The four i•m•science investigations are Gardener
Community Garden Inventory, Neighborhood
Exploration, and Weed
Participants develop an oral history and take photographs illustrating
a gardener's planting practices and "planting tips," and
the connections between those practices and the gardener’s
culture. The gardener can be from a community, home, or school
garden. The Gardener Stories provide a rich educational resource
for visitors to our website.
Community Garden Inventory
Participants take a walk through a community garden with an experienced
gardener. They ask the gardener questions and make their own observations
about the plants, structures, and activities in the garden. You
can use our online Community Garden Inventory Form to catalog all
the gardens in your city. This i•m•science investigation also can
be conducted in school gardens that include community involvement.
Participants use aerial photographs, maps, and a walk through their
neighborhood to see where besides the garden people can find fresh
food and places for talking with friends, relaxing, enjoying nature,
and cultural and educational events. They then produce a neighborhood
collage using photos and maps, and share their results online using
the Neighborhood Exploration Form.
Participants survey weeds in urban home, community, or school vegetable
gardens, and catalog the methods gardeners use to control weeds.
They enter their data into the three Weed Watch Forms and submit
their forms online. Cornell scientist Antonio DiTommaso is using
the data to develop
environmentally-sound methods for controlling urban weeds.