(Year 5, Week 10)

This is Jamie Harrington. He was 16 years old when he was on his way to the store to pick up some Gatorade when he saw a man sitting on the ledge of a bridge. “Are you okay?” he asked. Those three words saved that man’s life.

This story of Rosalie Avila didn’t turn out so positively:

There is a saying: “Sticks and stones can break my bones but words may never hurt me.” Do you agree or disagree with this saying?

This week, among other things, the heroes spent time discussing the words we use in the studio.

“Is anyone courageous enough to share a time when words either made you feel really good or hurt you?”

The heroes shared some emotional stories of times when they were hurt by words like loser, ugly, not cool, annoying, and other words. As part of their studio contract, they promise to speak with only encouragement, kindness, and truth. This week, they defined further what that means. The heroes will continue to discuss the type of studio they want to build, and how they will help support each other on their own hero’s journeys.

Early this week the heroes are received final approvals for their technical writing badge. Among other things, it must be handwritten, with clear instructions, and represent their best work. After approval from Writer’s Workshop Excellence Committee members, their work goes in the “Big Book of Instructions” in preparation for display at exhibition.

The heroes finalized their quest projects this week to get ready for exhibition. A few teams experienced frustration and challenge as they felt the dwindling of time to complete their work.

This week, the session culminated with parents, friends, and family members joining the heroes at Thursday’s exhibition.

The heroes kicked off exhibition with an overview of the session, some of their challenges they faced, and some lessons learned.

A few select parents then volunteered to follow some of the technical writing instructions created by the heroes. They included creating a sock plushy, a marshmallow tower, and an explosion!

Following the exhibition of technical writing, the heroes took questions about their blueprints, architectural research, and 3d models. Architecture judges were also present, judging the models and blueprints.

After a display of work, the architects declared the following winners:

  • Andrew and Lukas — Most Innovative
  • Ibby and Gwen — Most Likely to Be Built

These heroes will also be on a special architecture committee to help with…

At the end of the exhibition, it was announced that Heroes Academy has acquired land and begun the process of designing a permanent location just a stones throw away.

The winners of the architecture quest were also invited to be part of a committee to offer feedback and ideas for the new location. As the design process unfolds, these heroes will join the discussions at certain intervals with the owner and the architects.

Closing on Friday ended with the opportunity for the heroes to express things they were sorry for and would like to leave “on the field” as they leave for break. A few shared how they were sorry for being selfish quest partners, others shared how they weren’t forgiving or helpful to specific fellow travelers and were sorry. It was wonderful evidence of the character of these young people, having the courage to be vulnerable and honest, even when it’s hard.

This session was full of important parts of the hero’s journey. Conflicts with teammates, the departure of a guide, taking on more responsibility for your own hero’s journey and for your community, and having to execute a world class exhibition, to name a few. It’s not easy being on a hero’s journey, but watch long enough and you’ll get the chance to see the beauty that unfolds as these young people take on challenges and slowly, but surely, transform. And once you’ve transformed on your journey, the world looks a little bit different, your future gets a little bit brighter, and life gets a little more fulfilling.

Elementary blog for Heroes Academy, an innovative school in Boise, Idaho. We inspire children to find a calling and change the world → http://heroesacademy.org