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