The nine members of teacher Leila Nehlsen's Washington Island High School American Lit class invited me to speak about blogs today.
They've been studying Thoreau, Emerson and the Island's own Jens Jacobsen…about nature, journals, and self expression that can be published, or not, that often speaks to issues others may be interested in, too.
Their field trips and reading focused on personal thoughts and ideals, individualism that represents their own special gifts and talents, yet with the potential for being instructive and universal in their appeal to others.
There is something to be said for hands-on learning that textbooks may not necessarily provide, and certainly nature is one stimulus for that reflection on individualism.
Earlier, students had cut out their silhouette profiles, and these were posted in the hallway paired with quotes, for example Thoreau's "If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away."
We also spoke about being careful in what we say and how we say it, and the "forever out there" permanence of the web. With their assistance, I published this blog (with edits later) from their classroom.
- Dick Purinton