As the audience nibbled on cake to commemorate CreativeMornings/Pittsburgh’s second birthday, Pittsburgh host Kate Stoltzfus announced that today’s breakfast lecture would her last event as host. Stoltzfus, co-pilot of Propelle and founder/editor of Pittsburgh blog Yinzpiration, introduced Nathan Darity as her successor for 2015.
In over 100 cities worldwide, CreativeMornings pairs ideas with breakfast during short lectures on a variety of themes that change monthly, ranging from education to sex.
This month, CreativeMornings chapters are presenting lectures on education, a theme chosen by the Sao Paulo team. In Pittsburgh, veteran educator Michelle King gave an inspiring and engaging talk to a crowd of about 80 people gathered in Repair the World (6022 Broad St.).
King calls herself “the learning instigator” since “Beyonce was taken and so was Shakira.” The moniker aptly describes her mission to create experiential, equitable and empathic learning opportunities for her students.
King’s engaging (and hilarious) talk, “We Interrupt this Narrative,” explores the important role that change plays in education. With the proliferation of modern technology, society’s conception of education is shifting from a scarcity model – where resources are made available only by institutions of learning – to an abundance model, where web resources and connectivity make learning tools and information easily accessible to a wide audience.
As an army brat who moved around the world every four years, King learned to adapt to change at a young age. Her dreams of becoming a foreign diplomat, a “Cold War warrior,” in her words, were dashed when the world around her changed and the Cold War ended. She adapted by becoming an educator. Currently, King teaches cultural literacy to middle school students at The Environmental Charter School (309 South Braddock Avenue). Her career as an educator has spanned over a decade, having taught in Mt. Lebanon for over 15 years.
King identifies design as a tool that educators, or anyone, can use to harness change and to create “beautiful, empathic, engaging places” for learning.
She ended her talk with an assignment. Passing out Post-its, she asked the audience to write a six word story in response to a quote from American poet Mary Oliver: “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”
CreativeMornings will return in 2015. For more information, visit the website.