Guest Lecturer or Learner?

I had the awesome opportunity to connect with a classroom students at Greenfield Community College who are working on their Permaculture Design Certificate this past week.  Invited by their engaging, dynamic instructor, Abrah Dresdale, who requested that I talk about waste.

With an hour to teach and bountiful ideas, I arrived at the classroom and jumped right in.  I have to admit that every time I step into a classroom or workshop I ask myself why I ever left in the first place.  It just feels so right to be teaching, and I am energized in a way that feeds my soul.

In case you didn’t know, I left teaching and private school administration in ’08 to study for my MA in Sustainable Communities an Socially Responsible Business.  While I had always thought that I would go back to teach, life after my degree lead me in the direction of working with businesses and non-profit organizations.

Waste NotThat brings us to today where I’m now launching my first game, Waste Not, on Indiegogo, and increasingly teaching through games and interactive exercises.  This also brings us to why Abrah asked me to come in and guest lecture.

Waste Not is more than a game.  Playing helps to teach about the different possibilities of dealing with what otherwise might be considered trash in a way that uses the least amount of energy necessary; rethinking the cycle so to speak.

So everyone in the course got a card and we played and shared together.  Many creative ideas came out of the room that day (infinity candles, computers with upgradable components, etc.) especially when we got to the point of playing the ReDesign process in small groups.

What I wasn’t expecting is that the feedback I got would be about the greater picture.  While the players definitely had fun and enjoyed our time together, the input that I was given was more whole systems.  One woman commented that she could see the game as a great exercise for any group of people who were trying to problem solve together, and that by playing they’d really be able to do a better job as a group.   Another man agreed that the applications of the game went far beyond learning about waste.  Overall I got to enjoy being both the teacher and student that day and look forward to my next opportunity to do so.

I’m grateful for the comments and suggestions I recieved and will be taking them to heart (including how to store value, or give more points for multiple uses, etc.)

Support Waste Not on Indiegogo!

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