So… yeah, the fourth of July was a while ago… but I just emerged from my depression/anxiety cave I’ve been living in these past couple weeks, so I’m going to share them now!
We’ve been having a massive heat wave – the hottest I can remember it ever being here in the northwest – days upon days of the upper 90’s. It probably wouldn’t seem like much to someone somewhere else in the world, but here it’s much too early in the season for this kind of heat, and the temperature sure makes me grumpy.
Sam and I escaped to the Skokomish river the other day, and it was the best day I’ve had in a long time. Once we got past the slightly sketchy people camped at the trailhead, we walked up the river and found a series of small pools just right for swimming.
I’d really like to go camping soon, but one or the other of us keeps getting sick and foiling our plans. Hopefully we’ll still be able to make it happen a few times before the summer’s over.
I’ve been reading books from the Swallows and Amazons series by Arthur Ransome. I try to read them every summer, they’re my favorite seasonal books for sure. Someday I’m going to learn how to sail…
Early Futures is a website “supporting edge concepts about, from and for children“. Before I came across this site, I’d never heard of Future Studies, but it is a super interesting field. Here are some definitions from metafuture.org:
But what is futures studies? One working definition is: the study of alternative futures including the worldviews and myths that underlie them.
And what is a futurist? The futurist employs time, especially future time, to transform the present. Through deeply democratic processes, the futurist helps organizations and institutions move from the default future (which is often the used or the disowned) to the preferred future.
Early Futures focuses on doing this work with young children, and contains a wealth of research that mostly seems to have been done though interviews and experiences with preschool children. From their About page:
Early Futures is a source of research, projects and notes regarding ideas for alternatives in studying and engaging with young children. We believe that children provide deep insight into our understanding of human development and that integrated research with children shifts many common presumptions across multiple disciplines.
Early Futures approaches research from an integral, future studies perspective. We strongly advocate futures oriented approaches for children which include engaging with: alternative institutions, forms of play, new psychologies, edge sciences, alternative education and pursuit of creative philosophies.
There are a lot of projects I’d like to try with kids, including listening to their philosophies, asking them about their visions of the future, finding out what their unanswerable questions are, and using symbols to understand their internal narratives. I also think that a lot of this could be gained through careful observation of (and sometimes participation in) their play.
Here are some great posts:
They also have a couple interesting posts on Adventure Playgrounds, which is actually how I found the site.
“According to art historian Judith Stein, Grandma Moses was “practical at heart, turning to painting in her seventies after working with worsted wools for embroidered compositions,” which risked being eaten by moths. She painted mostly scenes of rural life. Others have noted that she abandoned a career in embroidery because of arthritis. Grandma Moses told reporters that she turned to painting in order to create the postman’s Christmas gift, seeing as “was easier to make [a painting] than to bake a cake over a hot stove.” Stein notes that “her sense of accomplishment in her painting was rooted in her ability to make ‘something from nothing’, as Lucy Lippard defined the aesthetics of women’s ‘hobby art’ in 1978.” Stein considers [Moses’] quilting work, for which she transformed cloth scraps into useful and beautiful objects, akin to hobby art.”
– Wikipedia (Grandma Moses)