Food Foundation

Healthy food has always been a priority at the Seed.  Over the years it’s taken on different expressions as we’ve responded to trends in nutrition.   Our current practices have been highly influenced by this article.    Another influence related to food is our dedication to planetary stewardship.  During the first few weeks of school, I . . . Read More


Trimming the Duck’s Feet

I walked into the K-1 this just as a duck was having her feet trimmed.  In preparation for their upcoming production of Crocodile Beat by Gail Jorgensen, one of the ducks was with her teacher, having a costume fitting.  On the table behind them was a pile of handmade costumes and props, including a crocodile . . . Read More


Congruent with Who We Are

As this fourth week of summer camp comes to a close, the word “congruent” surfaces in my mind.  Congruent means to be in agreement or in harmony.  It comes from the Latin verb Congruere “to come together, correspond with.”   All week long I’ve seen evidence of congruency in action. When we developed our plan for . . . Read More


Let’s Keep Moving

Things are moving and shaking at the Seed this summer.  When we designed our program this year, we wanted to make sure there was a strong movement component.  The summer heat often brings on a tendency toward being lethargic, so we decided to take a proactive approach.  We have regularly scheduled music classes once a . . . Read More


One Step at a Time

Last Friday morning was a popular time for water play, so the sand circle was flooded more extensively than normal.   I had the pleasure of being on duty for lunch recess and got in on some excellent water play action.  One thing I noticed right away was several children attempting to cross over the . . . Read More


Friday Projects

I pay attention to patterns of three.  This week, as graduation photos and announcements started rolling in, a set of three caught my attention: future  engineers.  For decades I’ve held the belief that activities children engage in when they are young often surface in adulthood.  When I heard that three of our former Seeds were . . . Read More


Teamwork for a Cause

Last week I described potential plans and activities happening on and around Earth Day at the Seed.  One project in particular took on a life of its own.  The Preschool 4s’ campaign to help the African Wildlife Foundation has become a school-wide effort, thanks to the generosity of parents, as well as their baking talents.  . . . Read More


Public Transportation

I had a flashback on Tuesday morning.  Seeing the K-1 class with teachers and parents waiting at the bus stop on 40th Street, brought me back to the earliest years of the Seed when we had only a handful of young children.  It was the late 70s, and the father of one of our students . . . Read More


Seeds Blooming

 I can tell it’s spring, and it’s not just the weather.  All kinds of blooming is happening at the Seed.  I noticed dozens of pink and purple blossoms on our peach tree, and the apple tree has buds as well.  Things are blooming inside the building, too, as was evident in the K-1 class last . . . Read More


Deep Studies

During Monday’s all-school meeting, several classes reported news of emerging studies.  It’s that time of year when deeper studies come forth, usually inspired by interests of children.  I decided to investigate the roots of these studies, and it was no surprise how varied, yet similar, those roots are.   Generally, studies have formulated based on . . . Read More


For Anybody and Everybody

It’s impossible for me to see wild geese and not think of Mary Oliver.  High above the Platte River on a wintry Nebraska day or passing through the desert at the change of seasons, the wild geese are poetry in action.  These words at the end of Oliver’s most famous poem, “Wild Geese,” have sustained me . . . Read More


How Does It Feel to Share?

This week I took one whole morning to visit every single class.   I asked the teachers how things were going in general and what they needed in terms of equipment and support.  The needs covered everything from replacing soap dispensers to ordering extra shelves.  Across the board, everyone seemed pleased with the challenging process . . . Read More


Climbing Trees

I was a child who inhabited trees. The property around our neighborhood was full of mature trees that provided multiple sites for treehouses. Some were built by professionals who knew what they were doing. Others were kid-built and, thinking back, I’m surprised my parents allowed us to hang out so high off the ground in . . . Read More


Such A Friend

On Saturday I attended a memorial service for Dr. Joan Moyer, my first ASU professor in early childhood education.  It was 1975, and I was a recently divorced single mom finally accepting the fact that I was destined to be a teacher, like the previous four generations of women in my family.  I’d already dropped . . . Read More


Underground Growing

Having been an artist my whole life, making marks on the page is important to me. Recently I was discussing the drawing of young children with Deb, our Preschool 4s teacher. We were talking about the importance of children having a drawing practice and how to support them in this process. I volunteered to come . . . Read More


Miracles of Multiage Learning

During my last seven years of teaching, I taught a multiage 4th/5th grade class.  They were some of my best and most memorable years as a teacher.  In fact, I’m still in touch with many of those students, who are now in their twenties.  Over the years, Awakening Seed has incorporated the multiage approach when . . . Read More


Invented Spelling

I’ve had a relationship with invented spelling since I started teaching in 1977.  Particularly during the 1980s when writing workshop in schools was spreading all over the country, invented spelling has played a big role in the lives of Seed writers and teachers. “Invented spelling, sometimes referred to as inventive spelling, is the practice of . . . Read More


Inspiration for All

It’s not my regular practice to write about individuals.  I prefer to write about our Seed community, about the relationships and dynamics that keep the school a vital, living entity.  Nevertheless, from time to time, a specific person catches my attention.  When you hear her story, I think you’ll understand why this week’s blog is . . . Read More


D N

Our Seed writers are on fire.  It’s a rebirth of the writer’s workshops that were prevalent at the Seed in the 80s and 90s.  Although there have been threads of writing throughout the school’s history, we wanted to re-establish the depth and volume of the past.  So every Wednesday of our summer program we met . . . Read More


Project Approach, Phase Three

I always appreciate how things come together here at the Seed.  Sometimes we call it the Seed magic.  This week was no exception.  As we kicked off the final week of our nutrition study, we also held our first grandparent gathering on Monday.  Grandparents appeared from the Phoenix area, as well as San Diego, South . . . Read More


Project Approach, Phase Two

In case you thought Wednesday was a bad diaper day for the toddlers, you can be rest assured, it was merely the PreK’s batch of brussels sprouts baking in the oven.   We take our nutrition study seriously and that means stepping out of our comfort zone from time to time to try new tastes . . . Read More


Project Approach, Phase One

Often a study begins with a question.  “Where does hummus come from?”  “What does candy do for your body?” “How can we turn into food detectives?”  Questions like these are surfacing around the Seed as we prepare to embark on our annual school-wide nutrition study.  We’ve had many successful studies in the past and expect . . . Read More


Totality

Just when our planet needed a positive distraction, nature provided.  Monday’s eclipse lived up to the hype, even at the Seed.  Initially, we made an executive decision to keep our students indoors to protect their young eyes.  We made plans for older classes to watch live stream coverage of the eclipse and some classes began . . . Read More


Invitation to Learn

When I was a kid I went to a public elementary school with polished wooden floors and desks lined up in rows.  It was a two-story red brick building that often felt stark and forbidding.  Most of the teachers were friendly and kind, although my enthusiasm for learning varied from year to year, based on . . . Read More