Awesome Stories 244

This week Awesome Stories brings you personalized learning, compassion, climate change, practical permaculture, model school and Ecocapsules.

Compassion for Healingclimate change, Awesome Stories

This is an inspiring story about a young woman who turned her grief into healing with compassion, wisdom and service. After losing both her parents to cancer in her 20s, M Jackson decided to use her pain to write, teach and tackle climate change. I love how she relates her personal pain to the challenge of climate change and remains hopeful. She believes we need to filter our science with our hearts to find creative responses to the challenges, whether personal or global. She talks about the need for openness, vulnerability and working together. I’m intrigued to read her book, While Glaciers Slept: Being Human in a Time of Climate Change.


I would love to have one of these Eco Capsules and could see it being my only home with the option to move around. The Ecocapsule is designed to be self-sufficient for water and electricity. Besides having a wind turbine and solar panels to generate electricity, it can store energy in the built-in batteries or charge other things like charging an EV battery! And the Ecocapsule has a built-in rain collection system and water storage tank. Then it adds a bed, small kitchen with sink and shower. And it’s light enough to tow with a car! I wonder what they will cost?

Personalized Learning

This hybrid program for personalized learning in schools inspires me. The promise of personalized learning has mostly not been realized even with online programs and many uses of technology in schools. This charter school in LA came up with a creative solution: a hybrid of online and traditional learning. Computers allow the students to work at their own pace and receive instant feedback while freeing up the teachers from grading and other mundane tasks to focus on guiding, helping and encouraging students. The real lesson has been that we still need teachers, but now ones who can help students use technology wisely.

Practical Permaculture

Here’s a fun story about a family that turned a run-down property into a thriving food farm using permaculture principals. Brett and Nici Cooper have created Limestone Farm as an exercise in living healthy, great foods and teaching model for others. They hold workshops and run a food stand that feeds about 50 families from their small farm. It’s amazing to me how much they’ve done in 6 years. I’ve lived in my house 4 and a half years and barely have a few flower and vegetable beds!

Local School Success

Principal Melissa Fink of Jones Elementary in Springdale AR has turned her school into a model program. When she started as the assistant principal in 2004, she realized that her student base would need more than simply teaching the basics. With so many students from poor and non-English speaking families, Melissa decided to teach the whole student and offer innovative support like sending books home, teaching the parents and providing on-site health care for the kids. Their students are performing at such a high level that the US Dept of Education came to learn and video the programs. They’ve created an interesting mix of nurture and expecting the students to succeed.

P.S. On a personal note, I’m needing to find a job and turn around my finances. Please keep me in your thoughts or send me a job offer!


18 thoughts on “Awesome Stories 244

  1. Thanks for these awesome stories, Brad. I like the idea of personalized learning, and think such an approach will enable students to become life-long learners. The book reference looks very interesting too!

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  2. The video of taking a run-down property and turing it into a successful farm is awesome (just as the stories you bring us always are). This is something that I could see many people I know wanting to get out to do (me included). Too cool, and very inspirational.

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  3. Thanks, Brad! Just love that you are able to find, week after week, ‘Awesome’ stories to share with us. I was particularly touched by the young woman who turned such pain into passion! Hope your Sunday is fill of love and happy things!

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  4. First, I love the eco-capsule idea – I had seen that earlier this week on an article. But more than that, I *LOVE* the two educational stories. Now that I run an after school program, we have a homework component (as we’re required to help them with that) but so much more of the program is about free choice – letting the kids decide what activities they want to pursue during free time. It’s an ESL-based program and we’ll have a component for the parents to learn, too. I love this! You gave me an idea to try to have on-site health checks…and more on-site stuff. Thank you, THANK YOU for sharing this!!
    As for the job stuff: I hear ya. I had quit my job a few years ago to write…and only lasted 6 months before I ran out of fund and had to go back to work. But…the lessons I learned from those experiences changed my life in so many ways.
    Now, I love the two big things I do: the ESL after school program and I get to be inspirational on my blog. 🙂 But at least the pressure’s off to “be creative and inspirational on command.”
    Envision yourself deserving of employment that not only makes a difference but also pays a decent wage so you can continue shining your light here! We all enjoy your words. We all love your message!!
    Sending you those vibes that will help you manifest that. You’ll get there. Of that I have no doubt!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • How wonderful that the education story gave you something to use for your teaching. I bet you are a wonderful and passionate teacher. I would love a day job to support me and writing could be a pure pleasure. Thanks for the encouragement and ideas Cynthia. I find myself being less and less hopeful after so long looking. Maybe I can rustle up some mojo. 🙂


  5. I enjoyed this week’s batch of goodies once again, Brad! In particular I enjoyed learning more about M Jackson’s journey, and efforts to link our responses to climate change to the heart. I agree with her purely logical arguments simply won’t foster lasting change. And I would apply this idea to much more than climate change. Responding from the heart is the key to many things I think…


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  6. Thanks Michael. I completely agree that bringing heart to the center of our lives and choices is key for the planet and for me personally too. I admire that she could be so compassionate and clear after such a great loss. blessings,..


  7. Wonderful share of that first story Brad.. Amazing young woman.. 🙂 And I can see why the shape of the Home for the future would be needed.. It would sure beat those High winds..

    And I just LOVED the Permaculture film and watched it all the way through.. A man after my own heart 🙂

    Thank you Brad Loved this Awesomeness and I am also lovely the Daily Good 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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