Reading the Wind

It’s that time of year when everything at school winds down.  Teachers are writing progress reports and making awards.  Ceremonies of completion and graduation are being planned.  Teachers are organizing students’ materials to take home as a record of the past ten months.  The one big difference this year is that none of the festivities . . . Read More


In Celebration of Awakeners

My third grade teacher, Marie Peithman, received me for exactly who I was.  She was a breath of fresh air after a second grade tyrant who made me stand on tiptoes with my nose in a chalk-drawn circle on the board, just for talking.  Mrs. Peithman was kind, and had appropriately high expectations.  I remember . . . Read More


Tomorrow’s Yesterday

When I was a kid, May 1st was a day of connection.  We’d make little baskets and fill them with lilacs, popcorn, and candy, then deliver them to friends’ front doors.  It was a sweet way to remember close friends.  It’s not a practice we see around here.  And with social distancing in place, as . . . Read More


Live in a Good Way for Her

Earth Day has historically been one of the most important days of the year at Awakening Seed.  It’s an embodiment of the Seed’s mission statement:  “Awakening Seed is an innovative, compassionate learning community that inspires global citizens by fostering curiosity, celebrating uniqueness, and promoting social justice.”  This year, more than any other year, it was . . . Read More


We Miss

 As we enter our second month of days at home instead of the Seed,  it’s beginning to sink in that we may be at this longer than we originally anticipated.  The novelty has begun to wear off, and the list of things we are missing from our old life grows longer each day.  Granted, most . . . Read More


Caring for Our Own

A devoted mother dove sits in the nest she built on a small shelf above the hose in our back yard.  She’s been there for nearly two weeks.  There were two eggs originally, and now there is one hatchling, whose eyes are still closed.  I don’t know what happened to the other one.  This mother . . . Read More


Keeping It Whole

On Tuesday morning I was over at the Seed taking photos for our upcoming yearbook project.  Evidence of spring was everywhere.  Bill has been hard at work keeping weeds at bay, and the freshly mown grass looks incredibly healthy.  A few class gardens are bursting with produce, including kale, chard, and spinach.  Sunflowers are blooming . . . Read More


Stay Open

When I returned from my trip to Nebraska, I checked out a group of mysterious cabbage-like plants in our garden.  Looking closer, I discovered underneath the lush green leaves a whole collection of tiny Brussels sprouts.   How could this be?  I do remember planting seeds months ago, but thought our rabbit visitors had wiped . . . Read More


Playground 101

When visitors come to the Seed and we open the door to our playground, the response is nearly universal:  Wow.  One parent even asked if our school was adjacent to a city park.  Many express their awe by saying, “I wish I’d gone to a school like this when I was a kid.”  I’ve visited . . . Read More


Counting Carrots

Exactly a year ago today, I left for India.  It was an adventure that changed my life and is still with me.  The orange-pink sunrise, the smell of rose oil, and the flapping of prayer flags in my back yard all carry me back to India.  Lately I’ve been reflecting on the year that has . . . Read More


On Fire

A few days ago I read a plea for help posted on Facebook by one of our Seed alums. She’s living in Australia.  Her post included a stunning photo of a huge plume of smoke and an article describing the fire as big as Manhattan.  I thought about her post all weekend and decided we . . . Read More


Last Night We Were Brave

Although everyone is moving a bit slower this morning, we’re all feeling the glow of last night’s performance.  The amount of effort that goes into our winter solstice production is unseen by most of our audience.  The vision, patience, and practice that fill up our December weeks came forth last night as we offered an . . . Read More


On the Threshold of Winter

 In most places around the country falling leaves signal the arrival of autumn.  Not so in Phoenix.  When leaves at the Seed finally cover the ground, we know we’re well on our way to winter.  Even though the winter solstice is still a week away, the leaf-covered ground is a sign that our balmy days . . . Read More


December Strong

 The other night at sunset, the looming darkness took me back to where I was a year ago.  Just a few weeks shy of our departure for India, I felt like I was at the edge of a great chasm, preparing to step completely into the unknown.  The month of December with the shortest days . . . Read More


Steeped in Gratitude

Preparations for our celebration of gratitude started last week as each class brainstormed ideas of what they could for another classroom.  In the K-1 class they began with the question:  What is it to be thankful?  Children said, “It’s when you love people.”  “It’s when you say thank you for all that people do for . . . Read More


K-4 at the Seed

 We want you to know about our exceptional K-4 program.  Although we’re just entering our fourth month of the school year, it will soon be time for making decisions about the future.  In order to help families make the most informed decision about elementary school placement, we are offering a K-4 information session on Wednesday, . . . Read More


Never Give Up

On my walk along the canal yesterday morning, pushing my great-granddaughter in her stroller, a man with his little dog called out to me:  “Good morning, Grandma.  Never give up!”  I replied, “I won’t.  I’ll keep going as long as I can.”  As I kept walking, his words lingered in my mind.  He pretty well . . . Read More


More Than A Nap

For the past fourteen years I’ve taught a kids yoga class at Desert Song Healing Arts Center on Tuesday afternoons.  I’ve worked with hundreds of children under the age of ten.  Some of them are in college now, and new students keep arriving.  Many of them attended my class for several years before outgrowing it . . . Read More


Color Study in Grey

Early Tuesday morning I sat in the dentist chair, looking out large windows into the overcast skies looming over the valley.  I noticed a heron perched on top of the building in front of me.  It was a color study in grey.  Monday was the autumn equinox, and our shifting weather matched the change of . . . Read More


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


Simplicity and Presence

Morning walks this time of year always seem to reveal life lessons.  Whether it’s an unusually simple cloud formation or a homeless man balancing his found possessions precariously on a “borrowed” grocery cart, there’s always something that connects with what I’ve been thinking about.  Two words, simplicity and presence, have been swirling around in my . . . Read More


How We Talk to Children

In July we took my great-granddaughter to Minnesota to visit her great-great grandparents.  Included in the mix of family present was my great-niece, Emmy.  She’s a bright, articulate, curious girl, and was completely mesmerized by the baby.  Being a typical four-year-old, she wanted to touch her new little cousin and find out all she could . . . Read More


Red Threads

The red threads captured my attention.  During one of my summer morning walks, I heard an interview with Marcus Buckingham. He described his life long obsession with helping others improve the quality of their workplace experience.  The interview held my attention, yet there was nothing extraordinary in the conversation until he brought up the red threads. . . . 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