From Failure to Victory (Year 1, Week 10)
Many new experiences awaited the heroes this week, and led to the ending of a wonderful second session at Heroes Academy. This week’s story starts with a Monday morning failure, and ends with a Friday afternoon victory.
Hero Buck Council
The heroes were surprised to enter the studio on Monday morning and find the Hero buck Store had been closed. All items and decoration had been removed and in their place the heroes found these signs:
Over the last 2 weeks, the Hero Buck council has failed to update and distribute hero bucks to all studio heroes. As a result the hero buck store has closed until the heroes resolve it.
Faced with this dilemma the heroes began discussing it amongst themselves, trying to decide on a course of action. This resulted in two studio members writing town hall meeting request forms with suggestions of how to proceed, including “fire them” and “get a new council”.
An emergency town hall meeting was called during lunch and, led by Jack, the heroes presented their ideas and discussed their options. It was so exciting to see the heroes initiate and run the meeting completely unaided by the guides. They upheld the rules of engagement and conducted an organized and orderly vote for the new council. After the current council (Caden and Betsy) shared that they no longer wanted the responsibility, the group asked for volunteers who who would like the role. After a vote was taken, Kai and Xaria were voted in as the new Hero Buck Council and have now taken on these responsibilities.
Tuesday morning was another opportunity for the heroes to explore a question and report back to their groups with their findings. This week the heroes were prompted with the question:
Why do people speak different languages?
In addition, the heroes were also posed with a related challenge:
Learn how to say something in another language.
The heroes explored the questions in small groups, collaborating together and sharing one computer per team. When reporting back findings, each team referred to the biblical story of the Tower of Babel as evidence of why people may now speak different languages. This lead to a discussion of the benefits of knowing another language in today’s world. The heroes were the most excited to share with their fellow travellers phrases they had learned in another language including Spanish and Swedish!
The writer’s workshop this week began with an inspiring launch about the power of words. A powerful discussion followed, with Heroes sharing personal examples of experiences when words had greatly impacted them. The heroes are becoming much more familiar with the drafting, feedback and publishing process of the writer’s workshop and their stories are becoming increasingly detailed and creative. Most importantly they are started to show more joy and excitement around writing.
The end of this blog post includes an example of a published Writer’s Workshop piece from each Flying and Soaring hero. We hope you enjoy reading them.
New Accountability Tools
Throughout this week the heroes have been focusing on upholding their studio contract promise of not distracting themselves or others. After discussing ideas to implement that may help them to uphold this commitment, the heroes decided to try a red card/green card system. Each heroes desk now has a card on it that can be turned to the red or green side. When turned to display the red side, heroes are signaling that they do not want to be interrupted or approached by anyone and, if they are, they will instantly ask for a hero buck. If turned to the green side, heroes are signaling that they are happy to be asked questions by others that relate to core skills or badge work.
A new “Accountability Jar” has also been added this week to incentivize high standards within the community. Each week we focus on a specific contract promise, and each time a hero holds a fellow traveller accountable this particular promise, a hero buck will be added to the accountability jar. If the heroes reach 30 hero bucks in the jar the heroes will enjoy another studio party.
With the end of session exhibition approaching, the heroes began preparing for the exhibition by creating the schedule, assigning roles and setting up the studio.
They have spent Thursday and Friday preparing and practicing for their roles, making improvements along the way after giving and receiving feedback. It has been exciting to see how the real-world experience, like the exhibition, has motivated many of them to step up in responsibility and involvement.
A Visit From a Hero
On Wednesday afternoon the heroes had the privilege of having a guest in the studio. Jim Escobar, a successful architect from the community, visited the studio to share about his own hero’s journey.
The young heroes greatly enjoyed having a member of the community in the studio and to have the opportunity to ask him questions about his work in architecture as well as receive feedback about their own work from the architecture quest. It was a rich time of sharing and the heroes were very engaged and excited by the opportunity.
After busily preparing this week, the heroes were excited to have their end-of-session exhibition this Friday. The exhibition was broken up into three areas of focus: the architecture quest, core skills and writers workshop. As usual, the heroes were responsible for planning the exhibition, setting up the studio and presenting the exhibition to their guests.
After Kai welcomed the parents and guests, time was given for everyone to look at the research, drafts, final drawings, and models completed for the architecture quests. After discussion, the guest judges from the industry, announced the winning model as Caden and Kai’s.
Garrett, Lily and Julianna shared with the group what happens during core skills time, what they most enjoy about core skills, and introduced the core skills scavenger hunt. This was a time to update parents on the progress they had made, and the new processes in the studio.
Jack, Xaria, and Betsy then shared their favorite stories they had written from writer’s workshop.
At the end of the exhibition, parents again had a chance to offer feedback on the exhibition itself. The feedback suggest significant improvement made in the preparation and running of the exhibition. It was wonderful to see the heroes rise to the occasion and demonstrate not only that they are capable of running an exhibition, but also, when given the opportunity in a learner-driven community, they truly can run the school.
At the end of a wonderful, challenging, and rewarding session, we leave you with the published stories written by our heroes in the writer’s workshop.
WRITER’S WORKSHOP STORIES:
The strange ring sat curiously on my doorstep.As I pick it up I noticed a strange inscription “RING of POWER” it read I slowly slipped my finger,when all of a sudden I am where Abraham Lincoln I saw JOHN WiLKES BOOTH and tackled him the gun shot it hit the chandelier and fell on people then I am back again and I took the gun.And. He got put in jail.
I had passed by the same door every day with my cat’always locked and suspicious’ closed but calling,as i walked by today the door was open,i stepped in and sudenly…
The door shut behind me,i heard a skream my feet felt wet i slowly looked down and i saw Blood,i shook what was happening to me,well then the light’s where on now the skream was only constructin metel the door did’nt shut there was curten’s and the so called blood was fruit punch the onwer of the house was throwing a party and I was invited.
I had passed by the same door everyday always locked suspiciously closed but calling as IWalked by today the door was open I stepped in and instantly I started to hear a sound. I did not knaw What it was So I cautiously stepped forward I see the source I said I Stepped toward it I started to fall I got scared so I started to bail. Once I hit the ground I felt like I broke my leg aw I Said as I notice Where I was in A rabbit hole and I saw a White Rabbit It said it would help me get out if I would be its Owner so I Said yes So the rabbit helped me get out and he came home with me so I could be it Owner.
I had passed by the same door everyday always locked in suspicious my clothes but calling as I walked by today the door I stepped in and instantly I started to hear music And I Take 1 Step And Is A Dog Was Plane Music And Saw Me And He was Let me Be With Him And We Went to the Pool And we have fun And We Went 2 home And We Did Have A Game And We Play It And We Have Fun
It wasn’t the first time I’d been stuck in a snow drift but it was the first time I had to escape in order to save my life Here’s what happened so I was walking in the snow and suddenly snow fell on my head Everything went black when I regained my senses I poked my head up and got some air I wriggled out of the snow drift and step toward home and my foot sunk into the snow I looked up and saw great polar bear Standing above me I tried to run but my feet just sunk into the snow I couldn’t run so I played dead the polar bear walked next to me wanting me to get on Cautiously i got on the bear and the bear ran with me it took me all the way back to my town and the polar bear stopped and I got off the bear and i went back home