Showing posts from June, 2013

Hip Hop Writing at Sabot in RVA Magazine!

check out the article from RVA Magazine about hip hop creative writing class taught by my pal, rapper Black Liquid. The talks I have had with him about the class are always rich and inspiring. It is so beautiful to see what a natural and gifted teacher this man is- besides being a talented songwriter and musician.

Most artists I know are observant and reflective people, but that doesn't always translate to their teaching. That piece that is the teacher's research- listening and being inspired by your students and learning as much from them as they do from you (or maybe even more) is just so crucial. To be a really effective teacher, in my experience, takes an ability to suspend your ego, to be open to the point that you might make a fool of yourself, to try and fail and try again to convey new understandings. This is not always easy for people who are experts in any field, and I respect and appreciate when someone can be good at whatever they're good at AND be a good teac…

Drawing the Unseeable: Love and Remembrance

While we were talking about what love looks like and where it is inside of you, kindergartners illustrated what happens when your eyes see someone you love, or when you think about someone you love who isn't around any more. The use of metaphor by young children is a fascinating topic for teacher-research. Here the children went two steps into into the abstract by showing first how love works inside of them, and then the relationship between love and time, as when someone you love has died, or when you feel anticipation, as for a new baby.

Ian drew how "love is a gumball machine, except instead of gumballs going down, the love goes up. When 
I feel love for my Mom, I feel my baby being born."
Here is poetic thinking made visible- the popping, colorful gumball machine of love for his Mom makes Ian feel the baby inside his own body instead of hers..

"Love comes when I see with my eyes, then turns to a song in my heart."
- Elizabeth

Tannin drew her fishtank, with a dead…

cool stuff on the web

First of all,
I'm hoping you'll check out this kickstarter campaign for a little forest school near to me in Virginia. I had seen the blog before I met Ruth at the Sabot Institute- maybe some of you were there too? She was really nice and got me excited about her quilted yurt project. I really want this to happen because I want to visit and learn how to make a yurt at Sabot school!
check it out here;

Allie of Bakers and Astronauts invited me to join 
Making Learning Connected (#clmooc)
A Connected Learning Massive Open Online Collaboration on Google+. I am curious to see what a massive online learning community is all about! Mostly I'm excited to use it as an opportunity to try all of the web tools that I've never found time to try, starting with spending a little time with google+. I've already made an avatar on
and a picasso head painting
Go ahead and take a look- maybe we …

Heroes of Love

The children in kindergarten painted a mural as a backdrop to go along with their connection sculpture. Since the sculpture represented personal relationships, the mural was meant to 'zoom out' and show some of the people who change the whole world with love. 

The children presented their work to their families on the second to last day of school, right before the portfolio picnic, when parents come to listen to their children read them their portfolios. It's one of the nicest days of the year.

be sure to check out
to see more of this story


One of the best things about the school year ending is sifting through the little traces of the children's and teachers' thinking. From the studio, I have the chance to help in many classrooms, and one of my main jobs is keeping up with the umbrella project. In case you don't know, Sabot's Umbrella project is a meta project- a way for the whole school to think about an idea together. This year, we thought about relationship.
The Kindergarteners started thinking about love on Martin Luther King day, and explored love's many aspects including the anatomical, the poetic, the different kinds of of family, friends, classmates, and love in a community.

They bagan a relationship with a group of preschool children from another school, sharing hand-made gifts and visiting back and forth. On one of these visits, the children played a game taught to them  by Sabot's P.E. teacher Renee. In the game, you throw a ball of yarn back and forth across a circle of pe…

discovering the work bench