Next week, I will be heading out to the desert with a group of sophomore girls for the second year in a row. I wrote about it last year and I hope for it to be as good this year. Mostly, I am really looking forward to some camping and being outside. I am hoping to go into it with the idea of just modeling excitement about being there, and less intent to actually “teach” anything. I think I am moving further and further away from the idea that kids need to be taught. Mostly, they learn exactly what they need to if you can just create space where adults will step back and let them learn. And also model that the “cool” thing to do is to learn new stuff. The more I learn about skateboard culture, the more I realize that these kids are incredibly motivated to learn new things and strive to attain goals. No one has to force them or grade them or ground them if they don’t practice for a certain number of hours every day. And mostly that’s because people that they like and respect have modeled for them that skating is cool and worth pursuing. People who make money on skate-related products do so because they utilize the voices of those role models to encourage skaters to keep pursuing their goals.

I think educators could learn a lot from those marketers. And I realize what a crazy thing that is to say.

So anyway, I’ll be out in the desert camping and climbing for the next week. Possibly there will be stories when I get back. Also possibly there will be pictures of knitting and spinning that I will be working on during the drive. Also possibly there will be pictures of the garden that I started this morning.