Educational Design Associates Blog

Not Out of the Woods Yet

Not Out of the Woods Yet

Is it any surprise that walking in the woods is good for you? There is a Japanese term – “shinrin yoku,” I think – that, when translated into English, becomes “forest bathing.”  It refers to the healing practice – and now a health trend reaching far beyond Japan – of...

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Changing the Narrative

Changing the Narrative

We are awash in a drumbeat of constant messaging about repeated defeats of progressive legislation – and how Republicans are certain to sweep the fall elections. This narrative, this flood of messaging, is corrosive. It is hard to deny that Congress is beyond...

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Idling in Isolation — or Incubating Change?

Idling in Isolation — or Incubating Change?

The world looks far different today than what most people could have imagined just two months ago.  The normally crowded Red Square at the local university sits vacant. The spread of the pandemic, the extent of the lockdowns, and the enormity of the economic...

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A Worldwide Teachable Moment

A Worldwide Teachable Moment

The world is eerily quiet. Car traffic, jet travel, institutions of all types, and commerce in general are all in uncharacteristic repose.  Much of the machinery of the world has ground to a halt, while our medical systems are in overdrive.  For those...

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Impeach Facebook!

Impeach Facebook!

For years the transgressions have been piling up.  Privacy breaches.  Data mining exposés.  Obvious violations of trust.  Denial used as a battle weapon.  Hollow apologies. Despite all this, most Facebook users have...

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Icarus & the Family Vacation

Icarus & the Family Vacation

The author, right, with his brother Pete I just got off an airplane from a trip back east to visit family.  I’ve made this trip nearly every summer of my life, which pretty much defines it as a tradition. It’s a wonderful recurrence of love, connection...

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A Call to Action

A Call to Action

Absent development, the Yintah represents some of the world's most beautiful land. Sometimes, out of the vast swamp of issues that vie for our attention, something rises up and calls us to immediate action.  A travesty taking place right now in the...

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The Voices of Youth

The Voices of Youth

I was struck yesterday by this news item: An 11-year old youngster in Florida was arrested by police in his middle school, following his refusal to recite the Pledge of Allegiance.  The youth, an unnamed African American, has refused to stand for the pledge this...

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A Crisis in the Yintah

A Crisis in the Yintah

It has been a dramatic month in the snowy woodlands of northern British Columbia. In a remote area known to its Indigenous population as the Yintah, or sacred territory, construction of a three-story healing center is nearly complete.  This off-grid facility is a...

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A Post-Election Hangover

A Post-Election Hangover

As a kid, I clearly recall the feelings swirling around the day after an election.  My father had a penchant for fighting losing campaigns, which always made the day afterward -- following months of rallies, doorbelling, and meetings --  feel empty and pointless. ...

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Halloween: The Climate Scare

Halloween: The Climate Scare

After extensive work canvassing for Washington’s Initiative 1631, the carbon reduction legislation that is now being voted upon, I have retreated to a tiny cabin in the islands to regroup and reconnoiter. It’s Halloween. Originally called Samhain, today is the ancient...

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Washington Must Vote YES on Initiative 1631!

Washington Must Vote YES on Initiative 1631!

Educational Design Associates, LLC is making its first ever election endorsement, in support of Washington State Initiative 1631. EDA is a small business, expressly nonpartisan and mostly nonpolitical.  We work with schools, youth programs, faith organizations, Native...

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The Reality of the Climate Crisis

The Reality of the Climate Crisis

In the cool of the late Los Angeles evening, I walked through the core of the city, at one point clocking nearly a half mile without seeing a single tree or other living vegetation. Wow. I was in LA attending a conference of the Climate Reality Project hosted by Al...

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Notes on an Ecological Catastrophe

Notes on an Ecological Catastrophe

I spent a half hour this morning in the company of a hummingbird. This is unusual. Mostly I see hummingbirds zipping past on their way somewhere, flitting and probing from one flower to the next, or performing grand sweeping dives, chattering in pursuit of mates. But...

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Flowers, Food, and Faith

Flowers, Food, and Faith

The town of Ubud is like ice cream: It is a rich and wonderful place, but take in too much of it, and the pleasure disappears. On Valentine’s Day, I arose early and cruised Ubud seeking flowers and a latte for my sweetheart.

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Another Side of Bali

The final days of our time teaching English in Samasaman Village were quite enjoyable. We had developed a wonderful rapport with Intan, the resident teacher and a notably curious and bright individual. Having hired dozens of teachers over the years, I know what to...

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Getting to Know Bali

The girl pumping gas into our scooter couldn’t have been more than 10 or 11 years old, but she had a wonderful warm smile. And she actually pumped the gas using a hand-crank pump on a tiny stand that might have been made in the 1940’s. Nonetheless, we bought our two...

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A Visit to Borneo

Note: A change of scenery is often conducive to learning. The next few posts will contain stories and images of the author and his partner Lisa’s sojourn in Indonesia. The trip is largely educational and 're-creational,' though we also hope to contribute, however...

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Who Are We in the New Year?

We’re well into January now, and most of us are falling into the routines that will characterize life in 2018. (Maybe they’re the exact same as our 2017 routines!) We call this the “New Year,” although for diversity’s sake, it’s worth noting that there are a variety...

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Income Disparity and Economic Justice

A new tax bill stumbles its way through our deeply-divided Congress, moving toward enactment despite minimal expert testimony, limited disclosure of its contents, and no bipartisan support. There are dozens of things one could challenge about the content of the tax...

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Renewables: the ONLY economical form of energy?

For everyone working to stop pipelines, coal terminals, tar sands development, and oil tankers: There is excellent news emerging. A series of studies released in recent months points to a distinct and unmistakable pattern: Renewable energy is not only here to stay, it...

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Armistice Day

It’s the 11th of November, and I don’t know about you, but I took the traditional two minutes of silent reflection this morning at 11:00 am, local time. According to the century-old origin of this ritual silence, the first minute honors the 20 million people...

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A Closer Look at Design

Last week I went to the store for chocolate ice cream. Since there was a sale on a new brand, I decided to buy one carton of that brand, along with one of the brand I usually buy. The sale made them the exact same price. The two tubs were the same size, shape, and...

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Sacred Ground

Acheewan of the Lamalcha was erroneously identified as a suspect in a murder that took place on Saturna Island. Although he was nowhere near the site of the murder at the time, he was known to oppose British expansion into his territory. Acheewan was pursued by the...

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What Happens When Teenagers Have Real Power?

Young people in our society are marginalized. The popular concept of a teenager is someone who is immature, a pain in the rear, lazy, and narcissistic. Most likely they are permanently glued to their smart phone. They don’t do much work, but still expect things to be...

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Finding Common Ground

“So… otherwise, how’re you doing?” This question, phrased by Grammy award winner Patton Oswalt in a recent NPR piece, reflects a collective weariness. As Oswalt continued, “There is just this overall gloom – political, psychological, emotional,” referencing the...

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Lessons From the Fray

It is hard not to watch the drama being played out in our nation’s capital. The new administration is settling into its leadership, and is ambitiously working to chart a dramatically different course for America. Some see this shift of priorities as “the...

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The Psyche at the Root of Democracy

canada goose Joseph Bailey’s comment on my last post included this thought: Is a representative democracy viable in a complex system where the neurology of people can’t keep pace with the level of changes being forced upon them? This question gets at a core...

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Creating Functional People for a Functional America

Earlier this week I was at a luncheon and found myself sitting near some folks I did not know. As often happens these days, the topic of our new federal government came up in our discussion. One of the people at the table, a Canadian, asked me to try and explain what...

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Plugging In and Tuning Out

We have reached a worrisome place in our relationship with technology. celine handbags canada goose We have – without conscious intent – tied our lives together with tiny computers that we carry everywhere we go. Today’s gizmos are so capable that it is easier to list...

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What We ARE Able to See…

celine bags canada goose Why should a medical school student – immersed in the incredibly demanding study of anatomy and physiology, of the uncounted pathologies and illnesses of the human body, and of the treatments and medicines and side effects involved...

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What We Do Not See…

Much of our understanding of the world comes from visual input. Every book we read, every movie we watch, every play and every painting is primarily rendered to our brains through our eyes. But what about what we do not see? We sense the vastness and complexity around...

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The Working Brain

celine bags Critical thinking, as defined by Dan Rockmore, faculty at Dartmouth College, is “A multi-stage process wherein first the facts of an issue or phenomenon are determined, and then the issue of interest is subjected to a reasoned examination from multiple...

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Dystopia in America

This is not a political essay. I have no desire to add to the cacophony of Internet political punditry. Nor do I want to use this platform to take sides in our hyper- polarized national dialog. But having just voted in my eleventh presidential election, I’m left with...

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The BIG Classroom

Two trendlines are coming together and becoming part of the fabric of our lives. One trend, as reflected in a recent Time magazine cover story, is the rise of such mental illnesses as anxiety and depression. In the world of adolescents, fully 25% have had a diagnosed...

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The Why of It All

Every day, something like sixty million children in the USA head off to school. Why? If you’re a student or a teacher or an administrator, school is what you do.   But as our world transforms around us, a lot of bright kids aren’t inspired and don’t feel a sense of...

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Prioritizing Education

We have a looming teacher shortage in this country.  Looming, that is, if you look at the field as a whole. In many areas, the teacher shortage is not looming but real and immediate. Most states, in fact, have at least some rural districts that are scrambling to fill...

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Storytelling

What is it that makes stories so compelling? When I think about storytelling, the image that first comes to mind is a small group sitting around a fire – eyes alit with the reflection of the flames, souls alive with the magic of the tale. It’s an image of warmth and...

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Seasonal Wordplay

Did you ever wonder why we have just one word for winter, spring, and summer, but, when it comes to this time of year, we can say either ‘fall’ or ‘autumn?’watch full movie The Exception 2017 online I was chided once by a British friend for using the word ‘fall.’ To...

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Teenagers’ Ability to Change

It’s common to think about teenagers in terms of struggle. Indeed, adolescence is a time in which a certain turmoil – social, hormonal, familial, relational, identity-related – is inextricably part of the experience. When young people have strong role models and...

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Being Fully Present

My last post mentioned the emergence of mindfulness as one strategy to promote greater intentionality. Let’s take a closer look at mindfulness. What we are talking about is in essence the discipline of focusing one's attention on the internal and external experiences...

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Renewal

The Autumnal Equinox is upon us! For someone who has spent most of his professional life on a school-year schedule, September is a time of intensity, mixed with anticipation and hope. This year, like a biological clock, those sensations have arisen for me, even though...

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Serving Schools, Organizations, and Agencies since 1991

Educational Design Associates was established in the early 1990’s to help schools and other organizations more effectively deliver on educational and direct-service goals.  Please bear with us as we develop our new website.  Should you wish to open a discussion...

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Rather than deliver “stock” services, EDA customizes every contract to serve the individual client.

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