In our attempt to explore alternative ways of looking at the practice of traditional education, I am finding that it is necessary to question and actually resist some of the rituals that have become part of this place called school. I encountered one such ritual this month when we returned from our holiday break.
Grassroots efforts are revitalizing the understanding of how STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) applies to everyday life for communities in Hawaii. The journey began in Hilo at the Institute for Astronomy nine months ago when the Charter School Administration Office sponsored a one-day brainstorming session to expand the definition of STEM across Hawaii's communities.
I'm assistant superintendent of a small school district located just thirty miles south of San Antonio, Texas, with a total school population of 1,100 students. Even though people consider it a rural district, our existence is anything but bucolic.
In part one of this entry, based on responses to an earlier post of mine, I reproduced some queries about how to establish a communal learning environment at school, and my responses. Here, I continue with questions and answers about how to hold community meetings and how to encourage fellow educators to share your enthusiasm.
I recently attended the Juice Conference here in Maine on the effort to power up the state's creative economy. The discussions focused on how craftspeople -- potters, weavers, dancers, musicians, metalworkers, woodworkers, and their ilk -- contribute to the bottom line. As I listened, it occurred to me that the conversation -- and the definition of "creative economy" -- needed to be far deeper, far more foundational than that. We must be more creative in how we think about creativity.