A Day Off. “I want my students to have a day off. A day off from a world of ‘not enough’. A day off  from a world of limits, a world of ‘”you can’t do that’. I want my students to have a day where there is enough, where they can, where they are the center of things for a while.”
Magda, proprietess and director of “My First Words” School chooses 3 female students annually to be queen for the day. She dresses them up in beautiful dresses, has them parade around the school, her church (next door) and their neighborhood. The whole school applauds them, celebrates them and then joins in a community lunch that Magda pulls together magically with leveraged resources and a lot of faith.

An Afternoon Out. “I want my students to be able to spend a day outside of the city. I want them to be able to spend time recreating with their parents and teachers in a different context. It’s good for them to see life outside of their neighborhood, outside of their context.”

Berkis, proprietess and director of “The Iris” School, takes her students and their parents to a different location every year for an end-of-the-year field trip. Her vision is that they would get to know different provinces of the island and expand their vision of life. She sees the role that recreation can play in building trust among students, parents and teachers.

Wisdom and Wealth. When I think about the ways schools like these are modeling true wealth and wisdom, I meditate on these two examples. These schools are modeling that wisdom looks like an appropriate balance between making individuals feel special and living in community. These schools are modeling that wealth looks like lots of love in one’s heart and a lot of ideas in one’s head.

What about you–in what ways have you had true wisdom and wealth modeled to you, either in a formal or informal educational context?



14052014-IMG_6698Magda, like many of the proprietors in the Dominican Repbulic, is a dyanmic, generous, and fully-committed woman. She lives and breathes her school, is wrapped up in the lives of her students, and exudes an energy that is contagious, inspiring and fully alive.


EdifyDR_044Berkis, director of El Lirio (“The Iris”) school has an incredible vision, not only for her students but also for her neighborhood. This vision has transmitted itself organically to the students. For the next school year, they have decided their neighborhood will be known as the cleanest in the entire city! To read about their recycling efforts, read this post