A History of Flowers

On my way home the other day, I noticed a yellow sign next to the Circle K at the corner of 40th Street and Baseline.  I hadn’t seen it before and realized it was a marker for something that had been near and dear to my heart years ago, the Japanese flower gardens.  Long before . . . 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


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


Marvelous Real

As an alum of Arizona State University, I often receive ASU publications.  One arrived last week that caught my eye.  On the cover was a delightful photo of Alberto Ríos, an ASU professor, Arizona’s first poet laureate from 2013-15, and a former Seed parent.  I read the engaging article about Alberto, his life, and his work . . . 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


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


Up Close and Personal

On my walk this morning, I heard the writer Elizabeth Gilbert  quote her mom in a podcast.  She said, “The big picture is in the details.”  She was talking about the way in which the bigger view of a situation can be revealed in the details of a story.  It seemed applicable for this week . . . Read More


Let the Stories Begin

As I write this, teachers and parents are engaged already in midyear conferences.  The amount of preparation that goes into these conferences is significant.   Lead teachers do most of the work and there are additional layers of staff support that round out the process.  It’s a major wave of stories documented and preserved for . . . Read More


Keep Moving It Forward

Everything changed a month ago and I’m still regaining my footing.  It hasn’t been easy and I know, in comparison to a vast majority of people on the planet, my life is blessed.  I know the shift that needs to happen is within and that’s where my focus lies these days.  Looking for inspiration last night . . . Read More


Heart Maps

Thirty years ago I met a poet who changed my life.  That poet, Georgia Heard, is still changing lives.  Currently writing a book about heart maps, a technique developed to help young poets find poetry in their lives, Georgia asked if I’d be willing to try out heart maps with the Seed third and fourth graders.  . . . Read More