Category Archives: Education

Profiled for Earth Day by my school: Columbia College Today

on April 21, 2023 in Education, Nature

My college magazine profiled me: Joshua Spodek ’93 Found Connection by Disconnecting. The piece begins: On May 22, 2022, Joshua Spodek ’93, GSAS’99, BUS’06 disconnected the electricity in his West Village apartment. Nearly a year later, it’s still off. For Spodek, an environmentalist, executive leadership coach, motivational speaker, author, professor and podcaster, living off the grid is the latest effort in his mission to encourage personal and corporate sustainability. “You[…] Keep reading →

Hear Me Again on America Out Loud: Living the Simple Life Off the Grid With Josh Spodek

on April 4, 2023 in Audio, Education, Leadership, Nature

Rob and Andrew, hosts of America Out Loud’s radio show and podcast After Dark, hosted me. I’ve been on their podcast and they’ve been on mine. I think I can safely say we’ve become friends across political divides, exactly the sort that everyone annoyed by today’s polarization. The episode is titled Living the Simple Life Off the Grid With Josh Spodek. Here’s the audio: We spoke about Here are the[…] Keep reading →

Teaching children sustainability

on December 16, 2022 in Education, Nature

I hear people talking about teaching children. I’ve been researching resources on teaching kids sustainability. I can’t find any that look like people who learned to live sustainably created them. I don’t hear as much about teaching adults, in this case, their teachers. Want to teach children sustainability? If their teachers don’t practice living sustainably themselves, it will be like people who don’t know piano trying to teach how to[…] Keep reading →

Questions about litter, following my thirtieth college reunion

on June 12, 2022 in Education

I went to my thirty-year college reunion over the weekend. I was surprised to find it didn’t affect me as much as reunions used to. After the big dinner, I walked south on Broadway to 96th Street. I felt like walking (the food was greasy and I had a few drinks so wanted to burn the empty calories). I used to walk those blocks every day. I felt sad at[…] Keep reading →

The Pennsylvania Historical Commission’s odd blunder on the history of slavery

on May 18, 2022 in Education

Look at the start of this sign I saw at Penn’s Landing after my fundraising bike ride: “African people, first enslaved by the Dutch and Swedes, . . . “. Is there some way to read that sentence that reflects history? Slavery has existed in many cultures since before Holland and Sweden existed, including Africa. Quoting Wikipedia’s Slavery in Africa page, slavery in Africa predates the existence of Holland and[…] Keep reading →

Everyone is avoiding what’s hard on the environment in favor of what’s easy even when effective.

on March 25, 2022 in Education, Nature

You know when you have an important job, how you often clean your room or do some other busy work instead of taking on the challenges? That’s what we’re doing on the environment. Here are some examples. Hard problem 1: Teaching about nature Everyone talks about teaching more science in school, especially environmental. Teaching children science avoids the serious problem: adults who don’t understand about nature, cause and effect, observation,[…] Keep reading →

Where I grew up, “a national model of racial integration”: Mount Airy, Philadelphia

on March 22, 2022 in Art, Education, Stories

I found an article in the Philadelphia Encyclopedia about Mount Airy, where I grew up, “a national model of racial integration, ” created through generations of conscious, deliberate work by residents, against opposing trends the article describes below, including white realtors trying to redline and black leaders trying to protect “blackness.” My mom, dad, and stepfather participated in several institutions promoting Mount Airy’s values mentioned in the article, especially West[…] Keep reading →

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