Awesome Stories 217

This week Awesome Stories brings you creative learning, solar homes, role models, forgiveness and ice bubbles.

Learning with Movement

Teachers and researchers are finding the children learn better with movement. Many of us learn kinesthetically, by doing rather than simply reading about something. This new area of study is called embodied learning and has been practiced for years in Montisorri Schools, who believe movement is an essential element in learning. Researchers are finding that movement and physical skills in young children are good predictors of academic success. And using our hands helps develop our brains and communication skills. Neuroscientists are also proving what many of us know; that our environment impacts learning and we need downtime, to recharge and refresh. Time outdoors to play and explore are critical, yet many schools are eliminating physical education!

Solar Energy for HomesSolarCity solar house, Awesome Stories

Tesla Motors and SolarCity have teamed up to offer a complete system for home energy generation and storage using solar cells and high-tech batteries to store the energy for when it’s needed. Currently, these leading edge systems are being tested in California, but they have plans to offer them throughout the country in the fall of 2015. I’d love one, though I wonder about the cost and payback. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see!

Keep on Learning!

How would you like to go to school with your great grandmother! I can’t imagine, but this is still an amazing story. Priscilla Sitienei is a 90-year-old Kenyan woman who is believed to be the oldest primary school student in the world. She had been a midwife in her village for 65 years, but couldn’t read or write. She wanted to be able to read the bible, write down her midwifery knowledge and inspire others. At first she was turned away by the headmaster, but her determination won him over. She is a great role model for learning and following your dreams and goals. Ironically, she delivered many of her classmates!

Faith and Forgiveness

I don’t know that I could find such compassion in my heart as did Beulah Mae Donald. Thirty-four years ago, her son, Michael Donald was beaten and lynched on his way home by two Klu Klux Klan members. At the trial, one of the men tearfully admitted his guilt and begged Beulah Mae for forgiveness. In an Alabama court filled with tension, many things could have happened, but Mrs. Donald demonstrated her faith and courage. She looked at the young man who had killed her son and said “I forgive you.” This was a tumultuous time for civil rights in the south. Her son’s murder led to a major trial and $7 million settlement that helped dismantle the power of the Klan in Alabama. If you’re interested, you can read the full story in this NY Times article called the Woman Who Beat the Klan.

Ice Bubblesphotography, Awesome Stories

Wow! Check out these ice bubbles photographed by Hope Carter. With time, patience and creativity, she found a way to photograph the bubbles as they freeze into unique ice sculptures for a very brief moment in time. It requires patience and just the right circumstances. In this article, she talks about her passion for photography, and the joy in having time to learn, experiment and develop her skills as a photographer.

May we find our passions and share our love! 

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24 thoughts on “Awesome Stories 217

    • You’re welcome Julie. Maybe I’ll try the ice bubble idea next year, though you have better (colder) weather for making them. I’d really like to add solar energy to my roof. Maybe my finances will improve. 🙂

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  1. I have close ties to the education system, and any mention of alternate learning styles always piques my interest. The box that traditional schools attempt to fit every student into works for some, but certainly not all. I am happy to see that there are more and more people that are thinking outside of the metaphorical box! 🙂

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  2. Really like your focus and commitment towards children, learning and education. The idea of movement and physical skills in young children, learning kinesthetically as you say by moving and experience rather than just reading is such an important part of life that complements the learning process…also I think brings out the joy and happiness of learning (and of life). Cheers Brad, another great series here!

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  3. Thanks Randall. I think my passion for education comes from how much I didn’t like school. Even though
    I got mostly A’s, I wasn’t stimulated to learn, try new things, think or create. We simply read, memorized and regurgitated info. I agree that movement makes it more fun, integrated and kids need to play and be active. I appreciate your support and thoughtful comments.

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  4. Loved the link to the children;s story needing to touch and feel ect.. Solar panels are cropping up everywhere in the UK.. we had a survey done as a company offered to install..but it came with a price and hidden catches, so we didn’t pursue, To buy them outright it would have at the time cost between £15 and £20.000 … Many have them installed by power companies who take most to the national grid..

    So many inspiring stories here, especially about the great grandmother.. 🙂 Never too old to learn eh! 🙂

    Have a fabulous week Brad.. and thank you for your inspiring awesomeness 🙂 Sue

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  5. I want to be like that great grandmother, and when I’m at that age, go to college classes with my great grandchildren. I think that would be a kick – and I think I could teach the students (and professor) a thing or two by that age!

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  6. As always truly inspiring. Very funny that it’s taken since 1936 to finally agree with Montessori, sometimes I wonder on the motives of these curriculum setters. Happy days

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