Losing My Sense of Entitlement

Stories

I spent eleven years (1974-1985) living and working at a place called Pendle Hill, near Philadelphia, where I served as Dean of Studies. Pendle Hill is a Quaker living-learning community—founded in 1930 and going strong to this day—where some 80 people share a daily round of classes, communal meals, physical work, silent worship, communal decision-making, outreach to the larger world, … Read More

Rural Learning – School Bus Rides

Stories

Growing up in the most rural section of Rhode Island during the 1960’s provided learning experiences that were powerful in ways that are still being revealed to me today. Our town, in those days, did not have a high school, so students were transported to neighboring towns on a tuition basis. For my brother and me, that meant an hour … Read More

A beacon of hope — in apartheid South Africa

Stories

In a Cape Town, South African Colored high school rife with the inequalities of apartheid, Mrs. Hilda Levin, my English teacher, represented a beacon of hope and encouragement. She was a White teacher, venturing each day into the Colored neighborhood where I lived (apartheid’s success was evident in our tendency to think in terms of racial categories); a courageous act … Read More

Creating the DLC

Stories

Constructing a narrative about my own learning story has stimulated reflections on my experiences as a teacher for almost fifty years in a variety of contexts and through all sorts of trends and movements. Out of those fifty years, one decade-length experience I now see as pivotal in the development of how I approach schooling. The lessons I learned ranged … Read More

It had already been a long school year and it wasn't half over.

Stories

It had already been a long school year and it wasn’t half over. I was vice president of my daughter’s elementary school PTA and our school community was in its second year of a new principal. The start of the previous school year, we’d not only welcomed a new principal, but also a new assistant principal, new teachers, new students, … Read More

Hanna Neuschwander's Learning Story

Stories

I was trained in school and through my early professional career to write and edit, to think and communicate clearly. Along with that training — which came packaged in an excellent, challenging education — I also learned to be a bit of a snob. I read books I was supposed to read, I could define “synecdoche” and follow iambic tetrameter … Read More

Cooper Zale's Learning Story

Stories

JLO. Before Jennifer Lopez’s fans laid claim to this three-letter combo, it was the acronym for the unique youth theater group I participated in from 1970 to 1975, playing a role either backstage or, later, onstage in over twenty musicals, comedies, dramas and children’s theater. During the years I was a member of ‘Junior Light Opera’, it was a group … Read More

Randy Ross' Learning Story

Stories

I believe that learning is optimized when every student has an effective educational advocate(s). In my experience, great educational advocacy is exemplified by stalwart ‘door knockers’ such as Mr. Bishop. As a college-prep math major in high school (many moons ago), it was not until my junior year that I could take an elective. I opted for a course in … Read More

Anonymous's Learning Story

Stories

When I was thirty, I had the great good fortune to attend my first Alcoholics Anonymous meeting and thereby board what I think of as the great ship of AA, which was to carry me through the often-stormy seas of life, one day at a time, to today, 33 years later. AA is an extraordinary model of learning. There are … Read More

Steven Birkeland's Learning Story

Stories

My story is true and from the heart. In the Fall of 2009, I began the journey into my next step of my educational career. After two interviews and glowing recommendations from my supervisors, I was awarded a scholarship to attend Bank Street College of Education to pursue my Leadership in Educational Change degree to become a school leader. My … Read More