Dean Howarth, a veteran physics teacher, brings history to life at museums, historic sites, festivals, conferences, schools, science and history camps, and other institutions with connections to both science and history. For over 20 years he has engaged in historical interpretation, as a private enterprise, under the moniker "The Natural Philosopher", along with his students.
As the Natural Philosopher, Dean performs living history lectures, lessons and shows based on the rich history of science. His narratives span the ages and tell the stories of great scientists, such as Brahe, Newton, Franklin and Priestley.
With dozens of individuals spanning all scientific disciplines, the Natural Philosopher educates audiences about the birth and fundamental principles of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). His engaging performances include replica instruments, interactive demonstrations, and lively debate (see video embedded below).
Mr. Howarth has appeared at many historic sites and museums, such as Mount Vernon, the Smithsonian, the Corcoran Gallery, The Society of Cincinnati, historic Old Town Alexandria, Rippon Lodge, Rumford House, Montpelier, Claude Moore Farm, Arlington Planetarium and the lawn of the White House.
In the school setting, Mr. Howarth mentors Project Enlightenment. The students in this extracurricular history "make history" by recreating 18th century activities at collaborating historic sites, museums and schools.
Students in the program have also made presentations at professional conferences such as Virginia Association of Museums, the National Science Teachers Association, and the Smithsonian Libraries.
From an extracurricular program, Project Enlightenment has developed into a credited high school class.
With a unique educational approach in the classroom, at museums and other settings, The Natural Philosopher brings the history of science to life.