Connecting the Dots

Dear Guild Parents,

What do the circulatory system, WW1, the life-cycle of a star, Samuel Adams, great characters from exceptional stories, and a single spring from the workings of an ink pen have in common?

Why human potential, of course.

Interdisciplinary endeavors provide the grand opportunity to perch students high above the realm of facts and mechanics, inspiring them to weave connections across disciplinary boundaries as they reflect on common themes, symbols, and purpose.

What better way to fortify learning?

An interdisciplinary endeavor challenges students to weave new knowledge to what is previously known. Challenges students to assemble and construct as they learn ignite curiosity.

And so letter writing is a tradition at the Guild. The kind crafted by hand. From the pencil markings scratched on paper to polished draft. The kind that take nearly an hour to read, to seep in and savor. Letter writing empowers students to share the connections they are making. Interdisciplinary connections. Connections at the intersection of acuity, creativity, and and ingenuity.

The November letter provides students the opportunity to examine learning though the common theme of gratitude. And the December letter, which quickly follows, explores learning through themes of navigation, anticipation, incarnation. In spring, the letters ruminate and resonate ressurection.

The crafting of our Christmas letters coincided with a wonderful Miss Lori lesson. When introducing students to The Committees of Correspondence, she first asked for a definition of the word correspondence and was met with the chirp of crickets. Not one could conjure a working definition.

“What does it mean to correspond?”

Crickets.

I imagine she stopped for a bit of word study before proceeding: “To correspond is to communicate by exchange of letters. Correspondence is a letter or letters that passes between correspondents (the letter writers).”

“Ohhhhhhhhhh!”

This set the stage for Miss Lori to continue, “The American Revolution would have never succeeded if it weren’t for letter writing.”

Think Samuel Adams. Back in 1772, he organized a network of letter writing—The Committees of Correspondence—to keep colonists informed of British actions against the colonies, and to plan a concerted response. Letter writing united the 13 colonies and girded their loins for revolution.

In brilliant writing, one idea leads to another. And when it does, the reader gladly follows.

Letters are no exception to this rule.

At the Guild, letter writing exercises are a grand opportunity to inspire young writers to connect the dots, dots that they might not have imagined could be connected. And as the correspondents weave this disparate knowledge to one, they bring permanence, relevance, and significance to what is learned.

When we embark on the art of crafting a letter, we remind our student correspondents that letters are first and foremost a gift. May you be blessed as you read your Christmas letter.

Letter writing is kindly, generous, revolutionary.

With love and peace this Christmas,
Kim