Yesterday, I was the chief presenter at a conference for AISNE on Design Thinking in schools, along with my boss. I’m amazed and humbled by the talented and impassioned teachers that came to hear me speak, and by the number of people who seemed to “get it” — that’ it’s not just hands-on projects, that it’s about taking up authority to change the world and modify how the world around us interacts with us, and that it’s about encouraging children to learn through a type of deliberate play. I could not have done any of this without my startling initiation into the tradition from Kim Saxe, who showed me more in a day in April in her Design Lab than I really thought was possible. And I hope that I have passed on parts of this tradition to others, in part through yesterday’s conference. Thank you to her. Thank you to yesterday’s attendees. There’s a phrase said in the Lakota tradition, the spelling of which I always mangle, “Aho Mitakuye Oyasin”, which means, “for all my relations,” and it recalls the subtle interconnections which bind us together.
And I’m exhausted.
I read the email from my boss, announcing that school is closed today on account of a snowstorm. It’s always a bittersweet delight to have a day off from school — so much I wanted to do today, which now must be postponed to tomorrow — but I don’t think that I’ve ever read of a school closing as a teacher with such unabashed joy. I gave out a lot of myself yesterday, and I don’t think I had the slightest idea how tired I’d be today.
But still. I’m up, and I’ve done my tai chi. It was slow today, because I’m not up for much just yet; but I have to admit it was sloppy, too. It’s this odd sort of mental weariness — I’m physically capable of quite a lot right now, but I’m in a bit of a mental fog. Thanks to Laddie Sacharko, who taught me initially: Aho Mitakuye Oyasin. For all my relations.