Teacher Feature

Meet Holly Pool-Kavana

With our inter-session just on the horizon, what better time is there to show off some of our Knowledge Commons DC teachers! Here is an interview with our passionate professor of plants, Holly Poole-Kavana.

How did you find out about Knowledge Commons DC?
KCDC came to my attention when a member of my herbal CSA, who is also a KCDC organizer, asked me to lead a workshop last fall.

What classes have you taught in the past?
I led a medicinal plant walk in September (Medicinal Plants) and will be teaching Winter Tree Identification this coming March. You can sign up for that class here

What inspired you to teach? Had you ever taught before?
I have done a lot of plant walks in the past. I feel inspired to teach because I love seeing people connect to plants and I really enjoy facilitating the process. There are tons of things to learn about the plants that grow in our area, from medicinal and edible uses to identification, ecology, and history.

What was your favorite part about teaching?
I really liked seeing people get excited about plants. 

What advice would you give to people thinking about teaching?
Don’t be intimidated by not knowing everything – no one ever knows everything, but everyone has something to share. I always learn from participants when I lead plant walks, and I think that applies to most topics. 

Have you attended any Knowledge Commons DC classes, if so, what was your favorite? What did you learn?
I have not attended any other KCDC classes, but would like to soon!

If you could take a free class in anything taught by anyone, what would it be?
Probably birding; although, when I try to get into birding, I just get distracted by the surrounding plants. 

Lastly, what is your day job? 
I have three: herbalist, nutrition educator, and birth assistant.  

Holly’s class, Winter Tree Identification, will be opening next week for registration. We hope to see you there! 

Sami Simon is an educational media producer at PBS Kids Interactive. She has a masters in educational technology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and has worked for “Sesame Street,” CloudKid, and WGBH.