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


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


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


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


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


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


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


Seasoned Warriors

Wednesday was Veterans Day.  I held my own personal celebration by calling my 95-year-old father, Jim Kenner.  He’s a veteran and continues to be involved in his local American Legion post.  In fact, he was the recipient of a 75-year continuous service pin in March, right before the pandemic hit.  We were able to be . . . Read More


In Light of These Times

The last sentence of my previous blog reads, “We are the Seed after all, and our work will always be to reach toward the light.”  I thought of this Wednesday morning with all the weight of uncertainly around the election, the growing number of COVID-19 cases on the planet, and the daily responsibility of making . . . Read More


Passing by Lovely Gardens

 A favorite part of my day is pickup between 3 and 3:20.  Over time, my task has become walking children from their classrooms on the south side of the building to their parents waiting at the gate.  It’s a time to connect with certain children I don’t normally see throughout the day.  Some students are . . . Read More


In Lieu of Halloween

 As the months keep adding up since the pandemic began, it’s easy to slide into the mindset of focusing on what we’ve lost.  I struggle with this daily, and all of it is making many of us feel incredibly tired.  Yet we press on, showing up every day to serve our students, support each other, and . . . Read More


Opening the Space

 Teal colored chairs and tables arrived around the same time as the students.  After many months of virtual learning, we opened the space for more of our elementary and preschool students to return to in-person schooling.  We were aware of the risks of adding more students to our classrooms, and it was time.  Keeping in . . . Read More


Stirring It Up

 A group of kindergarteners enthusiastically stirred a pot of mud recently.  It was a group effort, requiring sticks, big muscles, and directives from bystanders.  Their focus was intense and energetic.  Days later, another intensely focused person, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, known for her lifetime work of stirring things up, became headline news.  RBG served as a justice . . . Read More


The Messy Middle

A consistent presence in the kindergarten class from year to year is the hermit crab terrarium.  Hermit crabs become members of the class, providing hours of entertainment as they crawl in and out of wooden block structures constructed by five-year-olds.  What I’ve always found intriguing about hermit crabs is how they inhabit a shell, then . . . Read More


From the Stars

We’re now closing in on our second week of school in its new COVID-era manifestation.  I have to say I’m totally impressed with our teachers who, under incredible responsibility/stress, are making this happen for both our in-person and virtual students.  We still have refinements to make, and we are progressing.  I want to tell you . . . Read More


A Balanced Approach

We did it.  We reopened the Seed.  On Tuesday morning we were greeted by appreciative families dropping off their precious children.  Some of the kids were apprehensive about not only having their hair checked for lice as they do every first day of school, but also having their temperature taken.  Having to say goodbye to . . . Read More