Talking the Wall (and all those fabulous students) with WHYY Morning Edition's Jennifer Lynn

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

What an honor it was to join Jennifer Lynn, host of Morning Edition, at the WHYY studios in Philadelphia (listen here). We were talking about the Berlin Wall and the conversations I've been having with students at Science Leadership Academy, Downingtown West, Masterman, and Radnor High about freedom, risks, and responsibilities.

The Berlin Wall is down, but what walls still stand?

Would you risk it all for freedom?

Do you know what you desire?

Given a wall and some cans of paint, what mark would you leave behind?

Given a page, what poem would you write?

What matters most in our lives?

I loved the students I met, the stories they told me, the deep respect these students clearly have for those who nurture and teach them. I am incapable, often, of fully articulating just what my interactions with students and their beautiful librarians and teachers mean to me. Jennifer and Joe Hernandez were exquisitely kind to invite me onto their show and to work with me so that we might tell this story succinctly.

The story will air this morning at 7:45 AM. More on the work of these students and the experience can be found here:

On Teaching the Berlin Wall
At Science Leadership Academy: the Huffington Story
At Downingtown West: poems and graffiti art
At Masterman High: poems and graffiti art 
At Radnor High: poems and graffiti art
At Radnor High: photographic outtakes
Common Core Aligned Teacher's Guide
Please go here to read the teacher's guide for Going Over, a Berlin Wall novel

Note: Right now, Liz Taylor, the award-winning history teacher at Masterman (with whom I spent some time during the Wall Talks), is working toward getting her classroom ten new Chromebooks for her classroom (think of it!). You can help by following the directions below, and wouldn't it be amazing to do this for a school in the Philadelphia district, where funding is stretched and endangered?

1.  Go to
2.  Select Pennsylvania from the state list and enter "taylor" in the last-name box
3.  In the list of proposals at the bottom of the page, find "E. Taylor, J.R. Masterman Laboratory and Demonstration School, Philadelphia, PA Technology in History Education!" (it's currently the only result)
4.  Fill in your email address and check the box that you're over 18
5.  Click "vote"
6.  Check your email for a message with the subject "verify your vote"
7.  Click the "verify your vote" link in that message


chant2z said...

Beautiful. Beautiful words beautifully spoken.

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