#8 – November Retreat – Let’s Do This!

The November Retreat has come and gone in the blink of the eye. It seems like yesterday that I was thinking about doing a climate change project, but today, I am in a team focused on climate change in Vermont. Friday afternoon, I walked into the Starksboro Commons Ground’s Dining Room excited but kinda nervous for the process of team making. I was anticipating the welcoming and learning-filled environment I would be experiencing for the next two days, but didn’t know if I would be able to pursue my interest in the physiology of climate change denial and action. I wasn’t so sure that other people would really want to talk about this topic because I didn’t really know who my audience would be, but as soon as I saw that two other people were interested in something about climate change, I had hope.

We first sat down and started talking about what we wanted to focus on. A senior from People’s Academy named Rachel and I shared very similar thoughts and were ready to make a team. Alex, an eighth grader from Cornwall Middle School, who had been focusing on climate change’s effect on the Vermont economy, got on board with Rachel and I and soon, Olympia, a senior from Otter’s Valley High, was joining us, uninterested in his previous topic, Marijuana legalization. We started talking and soon I realized that I was had found a group that would be compatible to my ideas.  Soon we decided that we would focus on a specific agriculture industry, one we aren’t sure of yet, and then we would bring our findings and research to the communities most affected by that industry. When we were coming up with the how our topic related to Ruha Benjamin’s “toolbox”, we came up with a lot of really good ideas. I would say that I am Proficient in the Self Direction 1.1 Life-Long Skill Rubric because when we were coming up with these ideas, I was thinking about pretty much everything that was said, even if I wasn’t the one who said it first. I think we need to know why people have these opinions on climate change, why do people deny it? What information will make people want to change, and what won’t? These are some things I think my team will have to keep in mind as we research.

When I think about the month to come, I am filled with anticipation, exhilaration, and interest. I am ready to experience this different way of learning again, the rush of motivation that I can make a difference. I know I am going to work on my proficiency with managing my learning, Self Direction 1.2, over the course of the next month. I want to learn how to be in control of my own research and schedule that fits into the rest of my team’s and I think I will have plenty of opportunity to do so.

These next few weeks will be full of learning and discovering new things about my topic and teammates as we work together. I can’t wait for a second chance to make a difference for my planet and my future. This weekend was the beginning of that process and it was an amazing beginning, full of passion and excitement for everyone. I’m can’t wait to get going.

Elsa Lindenmeyr

One Response to “#8 – November Retreat – Let’s Do This!

  • Laurie Hickey
    3 years ago

    YAY! So glad you found your people. I’m curious what each of your group member’s strengths will contribute to your learning.

    Good for you -Elsa!

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