When I think of the work that we adults do every day, I see the hidden genius parts of it. If you look closely, you will come to understand as I have that other people notice as well, AND we all have different ways of seeing. Seeing, when it is expressed, is called valuing.
Being in Northern New England at this time has been a revelation. For the one-hundred and thirty of us new to Proctor this year, the routines are still new, but thankfully not as much as they were in the fall when they were “shiny” new. As we head into winter, we find more of our rhythm in this second trimester. We ground ourselves to our obligations and the joys of our time together as a school community as we creep up on the longest evening of the year.
In Indigenous communities, strong medicine means that you are in the presence of something that morphs and changes the very core of who you are, or even a situation. For many indigenous communities, healing is in the land. It’s even in the rocks and air. Just about everything possesses some kind of medicine or teaching from which a person can learn. Powerful medicine transforms. It heals.
Recently, the Proctor Woodlands Research Team (Proctor’s latest evolution of academic and afternoon program work) and I traveled up to a point on their trail map - marked E7. We also traversed over to D7, and C7 - as the crow flies. To look at the flattened representation of that area on that map, those pins were actually a series of bright orange stakes in the ground set at regular intervals marking the spots from which the group would do their work. To be precise, E7 is indicated on the map in the Proctor Woodlands that stretches due northwest from the Woodlands Office.
Today’s offering for The Journey comes through the voices of John Around Him and Lori Patriaca ‘01, both of whom have served a critical role in helping our Proctor community connect with, understand, and become a part of the Lakota communities of South Dakota, continuing a legacy of connection first made by John’s father, John Around Him, and late faculty member George Emeny in the 1980s. John spent last week visiting classes, spending time with students and faculty, and immersing himself in all that is Proctor. Enjoy John and Lori’s offering below.
This week at Proctor marks the period of settling. Just as the leaves in their autumnal colors change and fall, so, too, does our affective model of education begin to shift, unfold, and deepen as a storyline in a novel does. Every school where I have worked has a rhythm all its own.