Grow My Heart Again

Our summer program is off to a glorious beginning.  We’ve welcomed back many of our current students, as well as families we haven’t seen since March 2020.  Additionally, we have a number of students who only attend our summer program who are here for another six weeks of immersion in the Seed experience.  Many of . . . Read More


Graduation Under the Trees

If there’s anything the 2020-2021 school year has given us, it’s an overabundance of opportunities to be innovative.  After missing their graduation a year ago, we wanted to make sure our 3rd-5th graders had a memorable ceremony.   Although some of the mitigations for COVID-19 have eased up a bit, we still have to follow . . . Read More


Always Looking and Listening

Earlier in the week we talked with the lead teachers about blogging.  We were exploring obstacles that prevent more frequent blog writing from occurring.  This year, in particular, the addition requirements of sustaining our virtual program most definitely cut into blog writing time.  A few people mentioned that they find it easier when they have . . . Read More


The Scent of Lilacs

You may have noticed I skipped last week’s blog.  I traveled to Nebraska to see my family, whom I hadn’t seen in over a year.  I was especially eager to see my parents who are now 96 and almost 93.  This past year has been hard on them, and I’m relieved that they are both . . . Read More


Kindergarten Yogis

In 2005 I began teaching yoga to children at Desert Song Healing Arts Center, a studio in central Phoenix.  Over the years I expanded the kids yoga program, created and taught a certified children’s yoga teacher training program, and taught a weekly Gentle class for grownups on Saturday mornings.  Last Saturday was my final class. . . . Read More


How We Want the Earth to Be

It’s Earth Day again.  Although we think of every day as Earth Day at the Seed, there is a sense of celebration and commitment to planetary stewardship on this day.  Often we have chosen a school-wide theme, with each class doing a similar type of project.  This year everyone was invited to do anything that’s an . . . Read More


Snake Visit

 It was a wildlife day at the Seed.  The morning began with the arrival of Winston, a staff member’s rabbit, who came to visit the toddler playground. He was quite popular with both toddlers and older students as he settled into his makeshift environment. As if that wasn’t enough excitement, the grandfather of two students . . . Read More


Too Young for Marriage

For the past several weeks, I’ve had my eye on the large sunflower blooming in the Preschool 4s garden.  I witnessed the early stages when the teacher painstakingly watered and protected the seedling from its natural predators.  Once a small fence was installed, it began to grow rapidly.  I could tell early on that it . . . Read More


Stop, Drop, Roll

It’s been an epic week in the Toddler 1s class with a curriculum that has lit a fire of interest (pun intended) in the minds of our youngest Seeds.  They’ve been exploring vehicles and have had guest visitors pull their large machines into the playground for a close-up experience.  A family Jeep and a Kubota . . . Read More


Footprints in the Mud

One morning on the playground a student ran up to me and announced that there were animal tracks in the mud under a tree.  I wandered over to check them out, and sure enough, there was plenty of proof that we’d had a four-legged visitor, or visitors.  My first guess was that it might be . . . Read More


Ten Years

Monday, March 15th, marked the ten-year anniversary of my breast cancer diagnosis.  It happened over spring break in 2011 on my first-born child’s birthday.  It was a surreal day, and one that significantly altered the course of my life.  I had “the good kind” of cancer, ductal carcinoma in situ, and managed to get through . . . Read More


Can I Draw Myself White?

Our planned conversation about Dr. Seuss books was postponed until after spring break.  It’s a topic our entire lead staff is interested in, particularly as we develop curriculum that supports social justice.  We needed more time, and I have confidence that it will be a robust conversation when it happens.   In the mean time, other . . . Read More


Submarine Pickup

On Monday morning, as we were starting another week by conducting health checks on the curb, the father of one of our virtual preschoolers arrived.  “I’m here to pick up the submarine.”  The request caught my attention, as it’s not a typical pickup of materials.  Usually materials picked up for students still learning at home . . . Read More


On Solid Ground

It’s been a good year for peas.  All along the sidewalk on the south side of the building, tall vines are loaded with white blossoms and forming pea pods.  Peas are one of most popular crops in Seed gardens, and they rarely make it into the building.  As soon as each pod grows full of . . . Read More


Ally

Every year our studies around social justice manifest in an organically unique way.  There’s always a plan, and what actually happens emerges totally from the kids.  Last weekend I was talking with one of my former 2nd graders, who is now a young mom, and she said, “I know you’re really into social justice right . . . Read More


Assessing Where We Are

We’ve hit another point in the year when we take time to assess each child, then create documentation and a space to talk about it with parents.  It’s typically a challenging time for the teachers, and this year holds another layer of complication, due to COVID-19.   Assessments look different, depending on the age of . . . Read More


Showing Up Rain or Shine

A winter storm blasted through Phoenix on Monday, ripping three screens off our office windows and leaving piles of white precipitation scattered around the playground.  I learned later that there is a special name for this precipitation, graupel.   Graupel is described as “water that accumulates on snow above the ground, then freezes and creates . . . Read More


Cracking Open Who You Are

What I’ve always loved about this time of year as a teacher is the opportunity to explore human rights issues with children.  Even though I haven’t been in the classroom for over ten years, I manage to keep my fingers in the pie, so to speak.  It’s one of the most organic parts of my . . . Read More


Growing into Goodness

Yesterday was another day of challenging news, and although I’ve vowed to give myself some space from all of the listening and reading, I’m having a hard time staying away from it.  I want to know what’s going on in the world.  I want to be informed so I can be a better teacher, leader, . . . Read More


What Am I Marching For?

The other day I noticed this beautiful sunflower on the verge of blooming.  Two bees were scurrying about in the center where seeds will eventually form.  It was perfect timing for a day early in the new year.  Months before this moment of unfurling, I devoted considerable time and energy to protecting the seedling that . . . Read More


Winding Down An Unusual Year

Under normal circumstances, this week would have been a high energy time around the Seed.  We’d be putting final touches on the dances each class was about to present on Thursday night in our Celebration of the Winter Solstice.  Dances would be unveiled on Wednesday morning at the dress rehearsal where we were all dazzled . . . Read More


Another Light Gone

Over the years I’ve often written of my third grade teacher who made such an impact on me as a young child.  As I grew older, there was another teacher, Jim Fraser.  He was my math teacher in junior high and high school.  As I read over some of the memories posted about him on . . . Read More


Approaching the Solstice

Last week we were out walking in the neighborhood one evening and passed a father and his daughter in the process of setting up their holiday lights.  We could tell they were a team.  We commented how beautiful their lights were, and the dad said, “She’s in charge.  It’s all her idea.”  It was clear . . . Read More


Be Safe, Be Well

Normally on this day we’d be hustling around, setting up tables, plugging in the warmer, and preparing for our all-school feast.  The building would be filled with unbelievably mouth watering smells, and aluminum containers would be lined up for the eventual food service lines.  Eventually families would start arriving, and after a large gathering in . . . Read More