Step Five: The Interview

Find a quiet space free from ambient noise to conduct your interview. This means you might interview the gardener indoors, and meet them at their garden at a different time to take photographs. The public library might have a quiet place to conduct an interview and provide a neutral meeting space. Wherever the interview takes place, it is important that your teacher and parent/guardian is aware of the interview time and location.

Refugium Garden

A son interviewed his mother about her garden and the traditions she brought with her to the United State from her Southeast Asian homeland. "Gardens," he wrote, "are also a place to create new memories in a new land."

On Interview Day:

  • Test all the equipment before the interview (if it is being recorded), and make sure you have a pencil and paper to take notes, or to write down the interview if you are not recording it or if equipment fails.
  • Ask your interviewee to agree to and sign the consent form (see the "Garden Toolshed"). Explain your project to them, including how the story will be used. Let the interviewee know that they can withdraw their consent at any time during or after the interview if they become uncomfortable sharing their story.  
  • Start the interview with the following dialogue: 
    • My name is (your name). I am here with (interviewee’s name) on (date) at (place) to interview them about gardening. 
  • Conduct the interview in whatever language you and you interviewee are most comfortable speaking. 
  • At the end of the interview thank you interviewee for participating and let them know when you will be in touch with any additional questions, and that you will provide them with a copy of your finished story. 

Safety: If you do not know the person you are interviewing well, have them meet you at a public library or other public community space accompanied by a parent or guardian.