How to Pay Our Teachers More In Erica’s classroom, she was changing the world. Teaching is one of the most patriotic acts in this country. But as a teacher, she didn’t feel patriotic. She felt broke. Struggling on a salary of $33,000. She knew this was her life’s work and purpose and wanted to create a different reality for our teachers. So she became a principal. This requires us to look at school a little bit differently. Beyonce. She is exactly what Erica thinks about when she thinks about school differently. Think about all of the different venues she has performed. So how does sheRead More →

Shed Sexual Shame (and Your Clothes Along the Way) Imagine – you’re coming out of your shower in your bathroom. you’re completely naked. and as you reach for your towel you see your naked body – and no the mirror isn’t foggy… What is the first thing you think? Have you ever looked at your genitals in the mirror? You might be blushing a little bit, or squirming in your seat. and why is this? We look at our face thousands of times a day. We spend money getting our hair cut, colored and styled. Mirrors in our gymnasiums and yoga studios to make sureRead More →

Running Towards Rare The pop of the starter pistol shattered the damp air. I felt the tug on the bungee cord. It was time to go. As I ran, I felt hairline cracks in the pavement and the crunch of the fallen leaves and the smoothness of painted traffic lines. The world seemed silet except for the slap, slap of my laces against the top of my shoes. The curved metal hook of the bungee cord felt clamy in my hand. My running shoes and a trusted friend were taking me on a journey unlike any I’d ever expereienced. Because I wasn’t just running: IRead More →

The Tao of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle We all care about something. But where would you go to see the most care? Inside the recycle dumpster. It is much more than the place to throw out your old paper plastic and aluminum. It’s a container of wisdom and acts of extraordinary care. Recycling is an act of caring. Gail started a recycle collecting business and she found herself standing waist deep in a recycle dumpster. It’s filled with old soggy wet cardboard and an assortment of critters. She was humiliated. What if somebody saw her? Why am I doing this? She thought. Then she heard herRead More →

Aquaponics and a New Way of Thinking A Charlotte native, Sam enjoys people, gardening, and cats. In 1950, less than 5% of all seafood species were in a state of collapse. By 2050, it’s expected that nearly 100%. Couple that with our freshwater resources are already in decline and the population is to increase from 7.5billion to 10 billion. If we want to leave this world a better place for the people we care about the most, we have to change the way we think. And it starts right in our city. Tilapia is one of the most popular seafood species in the planet. 40Read More →

Don’t Keep Them in the Dark Why are we so bad at talking to kids about skin tone and race? As a society, we’re just not good at it, right? A white grandmother told me when her grandchildren asked why…she told them that God baked us all in the oven and left black people in too long. She was so proud of herself… And generally when children flat out ask questions about skin tone or race, we relegate to abstractions like “We are all equal” “We treat everyone the same” “We only see people, we don’t see skin color.” Children do see skin color! But,Read More →

The Power of Written Communication in a Technical Age When was the last time you wrote a letter? Not a text, tweet or direct message with an emoji. When was the last time you sat down with pen and paper and told someone you loved them, or you missed? The simple act of handwriting a letter can fundamentally impact who you are as a person and can affect society. When his father passed away after a long complicated battle with diabetes, he still remembers the shrieking phone call he received from his mother. It was and still is the worst day of my life, butRead More →

Shame is the Graffiti that Covers Our Purpose How many of you, growing up, had an imaginary friend? Did your imaginary friend commit suicide? No? Kim’s may be the only one. Her imaginary friend’s name was Charlie, he was cute and a good student. Kim’s life quickly fell into a downward spiral after she told Charlie to leave and he killed himself. Three years after she told Charlie to leave, at the age of 11, she experienced her first black out from drinking alcohol. Her life continued to spiral out of control and it was full of shame. In 1995, she was hospitalized for theRead More →

The Revolution will be Subtweeted: The Evolving Face of Pedagogy The academy needs reform. “Wake up all the teachers; time to teach a new way. Maybe then they’ll listen to whatcha have to say. Cause they’re the ones who’s coming up and the world is in their hands. When you teach the children teach ‘em the very best you can.” Maybe Teddy Pendergrass had the answer to a modern day problem 42 years ago. Currently, colleges suffer from poor academic advising, high tuition, and archaic course offerings and majors. Simply put, Higher education cannot afford to sustain itself under its current business model. Old schoolRead More →

The Boredom and Creativity Kinship Summer. With kids. It feels like you have to keep your kids occupied. On the eighth day, we told our kids to go play outside as we had no plans. That evening, Scott sees his son laying in a hammock that his son made (he had been talking about for weeks) reading a book. Everything came full circle. “My son’s teacher told the parents and students a few days before – parents your default is to fill up your kids summer with fun and entertainment, but maybe the best thing you can do is let them be bored.” The monotony ofRead More →