Thursday, June 24, 2010


Joan Korenblit, Executive Director of the Respect Diversity Foundation, receiveD the Embrace Award presented by the YWCA. The Embrace Award is presented to a leader in the community who is dedicated to eliminating racism and empowering women and promoting Peace, Justice, Freedom and dignity for all.

The award was presented at the Purple Sash, an evening of elegance, which is an annual fundraiser for the YWCA’s battered women’s shelter.

The Purple Sash Gala was held at the National Cowboy Western Heritage Museum on Saturday, June 19. Visitors at the Gala had an opportunity to see collaborative artwork created by students who have explored diversity. These works of art are a sampling of artwork from Respect Diversity Symbol Exhibits.

Monday, June 21, 2010


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I attended the Education Summit reflected below at the Oklahoma City Memorial Museum and would like to reproduce parts of it during the YAC Invitational. Youth and adults will learn about the Oklahoma City Memorial, the museum, the museum archives, listen to first voice survivors and family members. Then, the intergenerational group will embark in collaborative kindness projects. The Invitational schedule is forthcoming.

The tentative schedule is: Friday, August 6: 9-6, Saturday, August 7: 10-3 p.m.

The Casady Service-Learning Program has received a grant from the Memorial Museum for up to 30 people to participate, first come,first served. The $10 admission cost to the museum per adult and $8 per student is covered by the grant.

The Invitational fee is $25 per participant. Fee covers the cost of pre-ordered lunch, snacks( candy and fruits), drinks(lemonade and water), and project supplies. If we find donors, the fee will be returned at the end of the Invitational in funds for purchases at the Museum store. Parking available for about $4-6 per day at near by parking lots.

Hope Trunks will be delivered to Casady divisions who have at least one teacher participating in the YAC invitational. Hope Trunks will be delivered on September 1st and will be at the divison for two weeks.

Please let me know if I need to save a spot for you. We seek to have equal number of adults and youth on a first come, first served basis.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Reflections on Oklahoma Memorial Museum Peace Education Summit

TUESDAY, JUNE 8: FOOD BY WHAT IS COOKING 843-6530. Excellent menu Nice to see two former HH teachers facilitating this wonderful summit. Great Job Adonna and Lynn!
Introductions: Adonna facilitated with high, low, hello ice breaker. A question was different with every person we met. Nice quick way to do introductions.

First Person Account: Rev. Wendy Lambert. Her father died at the bombing. Powerful speech on peace found through observing the work of volunteers. Great speaker for National Volunteer Week because she focuses on how the person who gave her a cup of coffee made her focus on the humanity of the volunteers which somewhat helped her through the news of her father's death. Wendy feels she was there to be in one with the calmnes among the destruction. Her purpose was to be first hand witness as to the goodness of people. She was impacted by the person who gave her a sandwich, gave blood, gave a child a toy animal. She ended her presentation by stating, Acts of kindness bring the best in us during the worst times or through momentary acts of evil.

Crisis Communication: We learned how the police department and the media interacted. Important words by Chief Bill Citty, Tony Stizza, Director of Video of the OKC Memorial Museum, and Terri Watkins, reporter, RELATIONSHIPS, RESPECT and TRUST.

Ability to communicate was easy because of long standing relationships, boundaries were clear, and accuracy of information was based on trust. Security and protection of crime scene allowed free exchange of accurate information. Local media is part of the fabric of the community. A documentary I must watch is TAPESTRY.

The Investigation: We learned about details of the arrest, research, and trail from Hank Gibbons, Retired FBI Agent, and Leon Gillum, Director of Safety and Security OKC Memorial Museum.
-Unintended consequence of the bombing...Memorial a testament to the common good
-Responsibility for your actions...Life is not like a video game
-Culture of Silence...One phone call from people who knew about the bombing could have spared lives.

Interactive Lesson: Creative Writing with a Purpose. Most applicable part of the day for my practice as a director of service-learning. OKC Memorial Museum Fellow, Andrew Smith, Sheffield Middle School, OH. 8th grade students are given a toy from the Memorial Fence. Then, they write a healing story with that toy as a character. The story book goes to kids in crisis providing a message and gift of hope and comfort. This could be applicable to Life Prep 101 next year. Fence toys are available by simply asking Lynn Roller to send as many as needed. The HOPE Chest is probably something we need to have at the library the first two weeks in September also, if we decide this to be the social action project for the ninth grade. Our homework was to create a story based on the toy we were given. I got a baby seal. My story's first title was D.J.'s Wish

Creating a Memorial: Power Presentation by the museum's CEO, Kari Watkins. 1995 Blow to the heart of the city. People wanted to see good over evil. HOPE was the hardest word to agree from family members. 623 designs, 23 different countries, one winner. The choice: To remember, to reflect, to teach...from anger to hope for peace

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 9, 2010 : Food by Panera. Great Box sandwiches.
Homework discussion: It was amazing to see how the stories about the toys all had a moral to help children heal or have hope. My story, D.J.'s Wish is yet to be finished.

Cultural Memory: Experiencing History Through Creativity and Research: Most powerful presentation of the summit. Haley Thompson, Theatre/UCO Communication Education Coordinator related how she got involved in the Memorial (high school boyfriend's mother was a survivor. She went to the Memorial fence and noticed the poetry. She did performances on that poetry) and how she used a visit to the museum with archives research to empower her students to create a transforming play with personal talents(dance, music composition, song, poetry, photography.) Her students gave us a small vinegette and talked about how this project changed them.

This gave me the idea of having the third YAC Invitational at the museum. I will apply for a museum grant and ask Haley to share her process and experience to re-create her project with YAC students. Then I will like for YAC to have a professional development for the faculty on collaboration. I asked her students to be chapel speakers for September 11, Day of Remembrance and for the OKC Bombing Remembrace Day which YAC will promote. I hope to facilitate kids walking at the Memorial Marathon in 2011.

Process: Two days investigating to do a 45 minute presentation
1. Visit to the museum: What specific images/quotes/items caught your attention?
As students tour the museum they journal their reactions and feelings through their five senses. She asked them to go away from each other, to pay attention to their soul.
2. Visit and investigation at the archives: Explore and touch history. Journal through the senses. Recommendation: Buy gloves and bring copy paper because students will like to copy a lot of documents.
3. The Creative Process: The teacher's concern was offending somebody because the stories might be about someone who lived next door. Her directions: Treat it in a mature way and do justice to the story. She had performace rubrics.
Their performance has the following parts: Who were we before, what happened to us when we touched history and how were we transformed. The students created the show which included fences where audience left their thoughts after the show. The fence idea made me think about the Secrets Project and how to leave secrets without fears.

Teaching about the bombing: Program and Resources:
Called2Change Program: A result of Edmond students who lost parents. What happens when you choose violence.
Grants to take students to museum with transportation funding allocation. Archives for research. Reflective journals for every level.
Simple Truths Workshop coming up on September 29, date and time: TBA, but possibly Sunday afternoon.
Amanda Wrede from Cheyenne Middle School, 639-4596, is a great resource for Life Prep 101. She has worked with the museum and teaches ethics and leadership at the 8th grade level. She uses 7 Habits of High Effective Teens. Amanda also recommended Flip Flipping: Touching Kids Hearts, a book about compassion and loving versus discipline. Adonna Meyer is also willing to do a Colors Test for YAC. We need funding for her. I also met Robin Finnegan's mother who recommended me to to buy HOPE HAS THE LAST WORD.
The museum provides one complementary entrance to educators for every 7 students. Plan
1. Visit the museum
2. Visit the memorial
3. Have a first person presentation. Make an appointment for this presentation
Must see the TAPESTRY documentary

First Person Account of the Bombing by Amy Petty, Survivor (Chief Operations Officer and Senior Vice President of Lending Allegiance Credit Union). Powerful speaker. Stop often and evaluate your life. What do you wish you had done if you were to die tomorrow? Live your life with purpose. Be the person who does something. Life is short, experience as much as you can. Where in the World is Amy Petty? She will be bicycling around Oklahoma.

Legislation and New Standards: Kelly Curtright, Director of Social Studies Edcuation State Department of Education. Studying the bombing and the memorial is a state mandate. It is our story. The memorial helps us learned what happened and how to cope. The only area that has not been documented is the educators' response to the bombing. I asked Kelly about financial literacy and he gave me and to contact the Oklahoma Council on Economic Education.

Hope Trunk: The Hope Trunk available just by asking for a period of 2 weeks. Contact Lynne Porter, Education Coordinator to place your week on her calendar. 13 trunks available

Responding to Children in Crisis: Dr. Robin Gurwitch via SKYPE. We can see fears and worries. Concerns with safety and security. Worries with state, community, world. Geometry is not as important as father in Iraq or fear of natural disaster and death. Stress signs are similar to children with ADHD: Problems with concentration, grades drop, small attention span, mood swings, hyperactivity, hupervigilant-jumpy at police sirens. Headaches, fatigue, stomach ache, flu like symptoms. Take the first step to start conversations. Open yourself to them. You cannot fix the situation, but you can be avaialble to talk. Google National Center for School Crisis and Bereatment. They have a manual. LISTEN, PROTECT, CONNECT. Psychological first aide is for every one. Avoid comparing. A good book to read is LEAVE ALONE, BUT FIRST TAKE ME and _______to the mall.

Archives and Research tour: I found a picture of Spivey's collage. Pam Bell, archivist
It was interesting to see how the museum has preserved the accounts and gifts from people all over the world. When I return with my students, I want to investigate Susan Ferrell because she spent time at 37 on two things I wish I had done with my life: Be an attorney and dance from ballet to belly dancer.

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