Lasting Impressions

I first started teaching 4th/5th grade in 1999, the year we moved into our present building.  Many students that year were kids I had as 2nd graders, so we were already well established.  As we settled into our new permanent location, we slowly created functional outdoor features.  One of our first projects was a small . . . Read More


Across the Universe

It’s the time of year when many classes are engaged in deep studies.  Two classes, our Early 3s and Kindergarten, have been immersed in the solar system and outer space.  As part of the study, each kindergartener was given the homework assignment of creating a project.  I love when they arrive at school with these projects, . . . Read More


Harsh Times

Lately I’ve struggled to find words to describe these times.  This morning a fourth grader gave me the words I needed.  In response to a classmate’s honest sharing of a poem about a difficult family situation, one student said, “Writing a poem is a way to get through harsh times.”  These are harsh times on . . . Read More


Literacy of the Heart

In a recent interview with Mark Nepo, he offered an idea I’ve been thinking about for days.  He said, “In the Middle Ages in Europe for about 300-350 years, only 10% of the European population was literate.  That means 10% of the people living in Europe at that time kept literacy for 300 years.  Whatever it . . . Read More


Girls with Dreams

I first met Elsie Moore in the late 1980s, around the time of the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster.  I remember vividly sitting at a low table with Elsie and her husband, Wade.  They were looking for a kindergarten program for their eldest son, Arthur.  She was pregnant with her third son, Allen.  As always, she was . . . Read More


Read in Color

You might notice the sticker recently adhered to the glass door of our Little Free Library.  It came with the books and materials for the READ IN COLOR program sponsored by the Little Free Library Foundation, with books provided through Southwest Human Development.  Their mission statement says: “READ IN COLOR  aims to promote the distribution . . . Read More


A Mindful Monk

I generally keep a close eye on the sunflowers in my garden.  Several plants are blooming right now, in a wide range of colors and sizes.  I love watching the flowers form and move through all the developmental stages.  Over the years, the sunflower has been a metaphor for the stages of life.  I was . . . Read More


Baby Steps

This morning I was looking at the calendar on our office door that holds all the names of absent staff members.  In all of my 45 years of being a school leader, I’ve never seen anything like this.  Fortunately, this week we’ve had more people back, and the list each day is shorter than the . . . Read More


A Pathway Forward

Excitement is growing for our upcoming Welcoming the Winter Solstice: Darkness to Light celebration next Thursday, December 16.  Artwork made by our students is showing up everywhere around the building, including bigger-than-life puffins and an igloo decorated with cotton balls.  Personalized six-pointed stars sparkle in the hallway, and holiday desert cacti await final touches.   . . . Read More


Seed Carriers

 Last Friday the Seed was inundated with collard greens.  Cases of greens arrived along with bags of ingredients to prepare the greens for eating.  The collard greens were part of a program called The Blue Watermelon Project.  Their website describes the project in this way:  “Inspired and led by the efforts of Chef Charleen Badman of . . . Read More


Gratitude Inventory

This week has felt heavier than recent ones.  No matter how much sleep I get, or how much coffee I consume, I’m still tired.  I look forward to coming to school every day, and it still feels heavy.  Perhaps it’s true that we’re collectively experiencing pandemic fatigue.  Although some restrictions have lifted, there’s still more . . . Read More


Emergent Traditions

It’s the time of year when we start talking about the holidays, especially how to approach them in a developmentally appropriate, socially conscious way.  Actually, we’ve been in serious conversation about this for more than a year, according to my blog from a year ago.  For as long as I can remember, we’ve used The Anti-bias . . . Read More


Creepy Characters

The hallway is a lively place this week.  Parent room reps from each class came in and decorated the doors.  A brew of ghosts and gooey stuff, pumpkins, candy corn, ghosts, creepy underwear, bats flying in front of a full moon, a giant spider, and green balloons are some of the decorations.  One class made . . . Read More


Back Stories

Last Friday was a big step for our Seed community to begin spending time together again.  Our tie-dye and tile painting event was a huge success on several levels.  It had been two years since we’d held the event, and it took us awhile with the tie-dye part to pull everything together.  The night before . . . Read More


Just Like Zion’s Grandma

There was a bit of a commotion on Thursday in the 1st/2nd grade outdoor area.  With the weather cooling, there’s been considerably more activity outdoors.  The commotion was the construction of a “swimming pool” for their outdoor classroom.  It involved several shovels, numerous project managers, watering cans full of water, and lots of mud.  No . . . Read More


Argiope Aurantia

I spent last week in the small town in Nebraska where I grew up.  Although the days were warm, autumn was in the air.  None of the trees were turning colors yet, and the greenery in front of my parents’ house was plentiful.  Near the driveway was a plant that had poofy white flowers that . . . Read More


What Gives Me Hope

Thursday morning a coyote crossed my path on my morning walk, just as I was listening to a conversation where the participants were sharing quotes that inspire hope.  Here’s one of the quotes: “People say, what is the sense of our small effort? They cannot see that we must lay one brick at a time, . . . Read More


Come Through

On Sunday we received news that our long time friend, Deborah Cox, passed away.  Deborah and her family have been a part of the Seed’s history for decades.  Prior to retirement, she served as the assistant director of the ASU Center for the Study of Race and Democracy.  It was through Deborah and her family . . . Read More


Take Care

If there’s one thing we’ve learned this week it’s that COVID-19 is real, and we need to remain vigilant now more than ever.  Since we re-opened a year ago, we’ve consistently worn masks, practiced social distancing, kept classes separate, and followed protocols recommended by the county health department and CDC.  Our cases last year were . . . Read More


Uprooted

I don’t know how I missed it, but I managed to sleep through the storm that blasted through the valley on Monday night.  My first clue that something was up was when I noticed a large tree fallen across the sidewalk on my morning walk.  As I drove down Baseline on my way home from . . . Read More


Returning to Ground Zero

We’ve entered our fourth day of school and, all things considered, we’re off to a good start.  We have many wonderful new families, along with our wide range of returning families.  It’s been a delightful experience to see our students back in person who have been at home for the past fifteen months.   Additionally, . . . Read More


70

I spent Monday morning wandering Silver Strand Beach, just south of Coronado, California.  It had been almost two years since I’d walked that shoreline, and I was more than happy to be there.  It wasn’t an ordinary Monday by any means—it was my 70th birthday.  To be honest, it feels unbelievable to have reached this . . . Read More


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