Even In Our Neighborhood

Last weekend I was out for a walk along the canal by my house.  I was appalled by the huge pile of trash accumulated near a barrier consisting of styrofoam Polar Pop cups, recyclable water bottles, a GrubHub cooler, and a soccer ball.  I shared this with the 1st graders to remind them that climate . . . Read More


Sifting Through Climate Change

Since I last wrote, my four-year run of avoiding Covid came to a screeching halt.  Mostly it  felt like a bad case of bronchitis, for which I am grateful.  I’m slowly sifting through the residual symptoms, and am glad to be on this side of it.  I now understand the brain fog piece, and see . . . Read More


Activist Training

Each year around this time, we learn about the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. and others, like Rosa Parks, who contributed to the Civil Rights Movement.  Although social justice practices are ongoing, this time of year is an opportunity to hone in on activism. I’ve always loved putting together studies, and the chance to . . . Read More


The Sewer Where Ninja Turtles Live

This past summer when we installed our new climbing structure, a mountain of sand was displaced by wood chips that would become the material for the fall zone.  It was 20 inches of sand that had to be moved to a new location.  Some of it went to the other side of the building, and . . . Read More


Intentional Watering

From time to time a certain voice catches my attention.  Most recently it’s the voice of Christiana  Figueres, the former Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change from 2010 to 2016.   She is also known for being a key figure in making the 2015 Paris Agreement possible.  Christiana had a . . . Read More


Gathering in Gratitude

The days leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday look different from what they used to prior to the pandemic.  For decades each class selected a food item and was responsible for preparing it for a school-wide feast.  After a few songs with Jay, items like green beans, applesauce, quesadillas, cookies, fruit salad, mashed potatoes, and . . . Read More


Repurposed

I’m loving these new days of autumn, even though we are still in the upper 80s for midday recess.  After such a long, hot summer,  it’s wonderful to feel a breeze that’s slightly cooler.  The seasonal change has invited more time outside to enjoy our playground and outdoor areas.   While supervising a small group . . . Read More


Food Rainbows

Our food study has been deliciously successful this year.  In speaking with various teachers, several themes have been present across grade levels: learning about foods by color and what they do for our bodies inviting parents/grandparents to come in and share favorite or traditional foods of their families/culture making a connection to gardening and our . . . Read More


Embracing Loss

Sunday late afternoon, I was heading back home from a walk.  We live in a neighborhood called The Pines, named for the dozens of pine trees planted in residents’ yards.  Over the past two decades, many of them have died and been replaced with more desert-friendly varieties, such as palo verde, mesquite, and Chinese elm . . . Read More


Wrapping It Up

It’s been three mornings of celebrating each and every Seed child.  One class at a time gathered beneath our huge shade trees on the playground to honor the excellent year we’ve had.  Starting on Wednesday morning with the Toddler 1s students, parents arrived to join the ceremony, cameras in hand.  Their ceremony was an exercise . . . Read More


Bouquet of Moms

In every class there is a flurry of creativity that will translate into Mother’s Day gifts.  Without revealing any top secret surprises, it’s heartwarming to see such an outpouring of appreciation to the moms who are such important members of our community.  The Preschool 4s class held an extra special celebration in honor of their . . . Read More


Caring for Mama

As Earth Day rolls around, we take time to reflect on our practices at the Seed to evaluate how we’re doing and what we can do better.  As I look around, one area in which we’ve improved significantly is with lunches and water bottles.  Throughout the school, children of all ages are utilizing reusable containers, . . . Read More


Echolocation

 On Thursday I was sitting under the loft in the 1st/2nd grade class with one of the first graders, finishing up the final touches of his published book about museums.  Although we were highly focused on his book, I couldn’t help but be distracted by what was going on with the rest of the class.  . . . Read More


Toddlers Eating Carrots

You’ve probably seen extra vans parked in our lot these past two weeks, and plenty of ladders and equipment strewn in different parts of the school.  At last, our new fire surveillance panel has been installed, and the final details are being worked out.  It feels great to have this upgrade behind us.  We received . . . Read More


A Good Day in India

Tuesday night I set foot on US soil again after two and a half weeks of traveling to India.  Shortly thereafter, I received a phone call from my daughter, welcoming me back, and she put my three-year-old great-granddaughter on the phone.  She asked, “Mamie, did you have a good day in India?” I told her . . . Read More


seedjustice

 We’ve been practicing social justice at the Seed since we first began in 1977.  Granted, our students were very young and there were just a few of them, but even in those early days we talked about saving the planet and being kind to each other.  Over time, as we grew larger and expanded our . . . Read More


Getting Ready

This entire week has been one of preparations.  Danielle and I have focused most of our attention on setting up schedules, staffing, and the calendar for upcoming aspects of our program.  For example, we have been talking about registration for the 2023-2024 school year, considering placement decisions and classroom configurations.  We have had conversation about . . . Read More


Solstice Light

Despite all the hustle and bustle the season, I love this week of school leading up to the winter break.  The winter solstice falls right in the middle of it, which is an added bonus.  Over the years, the winter solstice has become one of my favorite days of the year.  I like the history . . . Read More


Leaf Showers

It’s been a week.  It was Thursday before I was able to work at my desk for any length of time.  As predicted by the media, the trifecta of winter ailments (covid, influenza, and RSV) has hit our staff and their families hard.  We seem to be slowly coming out of it, but there’s the . . . Read More


Food Kits

How can it be that we’re already entering the second half of November?  The cooler days make it seem more believable, yet it’s all going so quickly.  On the agenda for the Seed in the coming weeks is our annual gathering the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.  In years past, each class cooked an item to contribute . . . Read More


A Place in my Brain

In preparation for a writing lesson about pumpkin seeds with the 3rd/4th graders, I found these few lines from a poem from “Jerusalem,” a poem by Naomi Shihab Nye: “There’s a place in my brain where hate won’t grow. I touch its riddle: wind, and seeds. Something pokes us as we sleep. It’s late but . . . Read More


Gluing Seeds

Now that parent/teacher conferences are behind us, and the weather is definitely cooling down (relatively speaking), many classes are at various stages of planting their gardens.  It’s always an exciting time of year to start the process and then see what happens in the coming months.  Our garden soil is prepped each year by Bill, . . . Read More


Talent Show

These days fractals seem to  occupy my mind.  In her book, Emergent Strategy, adrienne maree brown describe fractals as “never-ending…infinitely complex patterns that are self-similar across different scales.  They are created by repeating a simple process over and over in an ongoing feedback loop.”  Further on in the chapter about fractals, she applies this pattern . . . Read More


Food Deserts and Beyond

For eleven years I taught first and second graders.  I believe it was some of my best work as a teacher that ultimately resulted with years of memorable teaching.  In fact, I’m still friends with many of my students and their families from that era.  Looking back, it was my most prolific time as a . . . Read More