This week Awesome Stories brings you murmuration, sleek solar, Kid President, passionate education and creative cooperation.
I would love to have one of these solar roof systems. These systems from SolTech Energy are one of the most aesthetically pleasing solar roof systems that I’ve ever seen. Plus, they claim to have very high efficiency performance that can be combined with other heating systems to provide all of a building’s energy needs. Do you have a solar system of any kind? Do you aspire to one?
In case you haven’t seen starlings dance around the sky in what is called a murmuration, check out this wonder!
Geoffrey Canada has a passion for education. He has some valid criticisms about how we seem to be stuck in doing the same things year after year. Watch his TED Talk for some ideas on how to improve the system using science and data. He suggests we run our schools like a business with more testing, treating the kids as customers, and making systematic shifts in order to help greater numbers of kids excel. His ideas come from decades as the head of the Harlem Children’s Zone where he has created many successful programs to teach, support and encourage the students.
Here’s a special look at fungi, by one of my favorite photographers, Louis Schwartzberg. This time, he teamed up with mycologist Paul Stamets, as he discusses the importance of fungi and understanding nature so that we can learn from and align with her gifts. His message speaks exactly to my reasons for caring about sustainability. Will we do what we have to do to live in harmony with the earth or will we continue to consume, pollute and pillage the planet for short term gain to the detriment of all? This may be the most important issue of our lives.
What are You Teaching?
Here’s another fun video by Kid President and Soul Pancake. In this one, they remind us of why we need to learn and that we are all teaching and learning, so let’s be awesome together. Together we make better music.
Micro Grids to the Rescue
India has a tremendous need for power and electricity due to both it’s growing economy and vast numbers of people, almost a forth of whom don’t have access to electricity. India’s current grid is plagued by outages and poor service. The solution may lie in small, locally produced energy systems called micro grids. Currently, micro grids rely on solar panels and make up a tiny portion of India’s power, but they are on the rise as entrepreneurs hope to create sustainable solutions that empower people, leapfrogging the need for large, costly grid based solutions.
I love how TED fellow Jorge Mañes Rubio created an imaginary micro nation as a way to bring a multi-cultural neighborhood together. This Amsterdam neighborhood had been plagued by tension and bullying among the diverse groups. He offered up the idea to create a new nation, the People’s Democratic Republic of Columbusplein, as a creative way to interweave the various cultures, groups and people. Read more about how his idea to build a micro nation opened up possibilities for connections beyond the current structures and problems.
10 Awesome Ideas for Wise Water Use
The local watershed group just published this article filled with 10 ideas for wise water use in your yard. I’ve already started some of them like using native plants and rain harvesting. I’d love to try the rain chains and rain garden ideas. Which is your favorite water use idea?