Yes, this post comes with a warning label. Because you may find that, like me, you will discover absolute and unending delight in brainstorming. It, quite frankly, consumes much of my awake hours and, I might just as well admit, my sleeping hours as well. The process of allowing my mind to wander freely and then latch onto and develop some of those random ideas that float through is, in fact, addicting. I adore the challenge and thrill of envisioning, evolving, and then sharing these new ideas and possibilities with others.
I firmly believe that brainstorming allows our natural and innate curiosity to become the principal means of investigating concepts by delving deeply into all of those things that spark our initial interest. This is, indeed, the basis for self-directed learning.
Deep Root Center not only supports the brainstorming process, we actually foster it by providing an open, enriching environment filled with tools, equipment, resources, and supplies, as well as the emotional space and time each student may need to safely develop, investigate, and implement their theories.
Within this supportive setting, each student member has a completely unique system of accessing these powerful tools. Some students share their ideas and work with others. Several kids generate fantastical storylines together through their cooperative and creative play. Many work quietly on independent projects. And others create spontaneously as they examine, investigate, and play with all of the supplies and materials.
One Deep Root Center student member, as you have probably seen, has even been recognized in the local media (with potential national coverage on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon) for a project he brainstormed and then designed and built at DRC.
One of my latest personal brainstorm includes creating a Maker Space with the essentials for all of these fantastic hands-on projects, right here in Canton. For those who have never heard of Maker Spaces, they are operations, ranging in size, that are trending in larger cities around the world. They offer the space, a variety of tools, materials, and equipment for the public to use, as well as skilled employees (facilitators) who can provide assistance. Some have monthly fees, others are part of existing businesses and some have a per use rate.
I am sharing my idea with the community to get your suggestions, feedback, and your assistance to devise and implement a plan.
The following is what I have imagined so far: