Faculty Goal Statement 2014-15

Adam Hudson
6th Grade Global Cultures

With all the resources available to me, my goal for the 2014-15 academic year is not only to reproduce the Global Culture’s multi-year established curriculum, but to offer my unique insights, scholastic training, and enthusiastic spirit to each class I teach. As a teacher, I understand the significance I hold within the minds and hearts of each of my students. In honor of that responsibility, I am always working toward an integrated classroom experience that includes both deep care and academic rigor. I am also convicted that laying claim to this high level of responsibility requires a special attentiveness to balancing individual, needs-based learning while demanding collective growth as an entire class.
I expect to fulfill these aspirations, but in the pursuit of any high goal there are always challenges. When I am challenged I am committed to conscientiously seeing these moments through and especially seeking help. Because, at the core of my commitment to teaching is a commitment to learning. I understand the opportunities for my greatest learning are often in the face of my greatest difficulties and that my learning as an individual both in character and knowledge is the leadership that my students, community, and family deserve.
Lastly, I am absolutely committed to the goals of GPS as a nurturing center of education aiming to build young girls into powerful leaders, compassionate, and responsible to their local and global community. My goal is to participate as an empowered masculine presence in the lives of our girls, to give them a view of masculinity that redefines heteronormative roles, intervenes in the histories of masculine dominance and oppression, and offers new avenues of creatively navigating complex issues of self, society, and transformation. I aim to build on GPS’ exceptional feminist tradition and contribute to its ongoing potential.

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The Gift of Structuralism

He’s presenting what is understood as structuralism as opposed to liberalism. We are constituted by the very forces we believe to have power over – i.e. genetics and society. This perspective offers us the radical notion of ultimately NOT be responsible for our place in the world which can be a miracle as it suggests embracing deep humility, and as regards others, compassion. In the last 30 years or so, increasingly in the present, we have post-structuralist discourse growing and evolving – as evidenced in academia with more and more Post-Colonial Theory, Woman’s Studies departments, Black Studies, Queer Theory, etc. – all modes of thought basically saying the same thing with a bit more self-justified intensity (sometimes anger) for the oppression they’ve experienced and the empowerment they demand of themselves and society.

I hit my head today.

Absolutely exceptional weather… the pressure had dropped slightly, just enough to reduce the humidity, making the air feel light and crisp… The blue sky was boundless and made the deep green of the trees and grass super vivid – alive. As the day greeted me this morning I leaned down and tossed my first bag into my truck; I grabbed my second bag and turned to duck inside the door and WHAMMM! I smacked the shit out of my head. Its 15 hours later and I’ve still got the bump.

I keep learning about my body here… here in life. I really like discovering my body – as an interest – and the more attention/love I offer it the greater its voice – sometimes it speaks more loudly than others. Experience speaks. I looked up in the blue sky, as the light shone through the leaves and my pain flowed freely from my head, “What the hell?” I ask God questions. I question God. I guess it was a call to awareness… I took it as a call, but thus began the suspicion I held against the day.

The first meeting I had today came at me like an encounter with an old friend I had long since attempted to discard. Are you still around?… hell. The entire meeting unfolded like a constellation of subtle, internal negative feelings that reminded me of so many horrible experiences I had in grad school. Feelings of not being heard, unacknowledged, attempting to get a word in and being spoken over… then after the meeting, an emotional hangover that lasted another hour or so. Still, I’m a brand new teacher. I have little to contribute in a collective conversation about the school, and I’m learning. Naturally, my hour of silence was as participatory as I could make it. The head of the school was there, and I want to talk about me being a karmic (chronic?) beta, but I’ll leave that pandora’s box for another post.

THEN! I ran over a damn curb in a virtually curb-less parking lot. What the hell!!? ALSO!! I was moving a couch into an elevator and happened to have my mouth next to the wooden arm as it was hoisted up – that hurt too. WHAT the hell? What messages am I to divine from all these hits today? …on such a beautiful day…

I don’t mean to mislead concerning the collection of meaning. That “everything” means something “deeper” – that there’s some deeper symbolism in all things, all the time, can lead to nihilism (or just non-sense) if your not careful. Still, having an ability to elucidate experience through multiple lenses is absolutely vital to discovery and beauty. Perhaps more important than one’s own interpretations are those of close friends – the closed mouth kind (good listeners).

Sooo…My sponsor suggested two valuable insights that I take with me to bed tonight. The first is super grounded in messy, throbbing reality and the second is full of faith. The first is that I’m not perfect. Its easy to forget if you’re me…or if you’re HUMAN. I ran over a curb with my truck – I’m an idiot right there. I’m not a mover; I don’t do manual labor (that often) – you should see my hands, they’re really nice looking. The second insight my sponsor suggested spoke to the more deeper part of me that encountered an old pattern of insecurity – a weakness that felt absolutely deep, inherited-deep, so deep that by no act of my own nor power that I posses would I be rid of this weakness. He told me that I was right…I do not have the power to fix that core wound but that God does. There is in fact operative powers of consciousness and healing, of grace, faith, and love – A Higher Power – that can and will restore the obvious deficit of power I lack. All I have to do is continue the course that lays before me…

WELL… wonderful! In the course of learning, recovery – of philosophy – there is a tendency toward the alleviation of inherited pain.

SF -ing

While in San Francisco I worked with a really cool summer school. I taught flight science or… I made paper airplanes with the 4th and 5th graders… whichever. These kids are beautiful, intelligent, hybrid babies – the genetic offspring of usual SF mating configurations – white father, Chinese mother…what did my former roommate say about how people jokingly describe his/these relationships? …was it “rice-cakes?”

Anyways, the socialization of children remains the product of deeper ideals. I was walking the courtyard during lunch and noticed a 3rd grader frustratingly complaining to his lunch buddies that one of older kids was already using the balls. I admit I was subtly triggered by the outpouring of his complaint – rooted as it was in a feeling of unfairness. I walked up to him and squat down. “What’s going on?” “He’s playing with the ball and he’s not supposed to be doing that. We’re supposed to be eating lunch.” His voice continued to rise in exacerbated pitch. “I’ve been watching him! He hasn’t even finished his lunch.” I couldn’t help but smile and laugh a little under my breath because he was so damn cute. I asked, “What if he’s not feeling well to his stomach and he needed to stop eating?” The boy rebutted, “He’s not sick! I’ve been watching him. He shouldn’t be playing yet!” I couldn’t help but push the conversation further now. “Does it feel unfair?” “YES!” Then I proposed something that is still causing me to reflect on the nature of socialization, parenting, development, and culture: “What if everything is good right now? What if he’s doing exactly what he needs to be doing and you are doing exactly what you need to be doing? What if nothing is wrong?” I continued pressing him and his friends, “What if instead of things being unfair it was really the opposite? He is getting to play and that awesome! What if instead of feeling that it is unfair… what if you celebrated that fact that he was getting to play? And that you get to eat…knowing that in a few moments you will be to play too?” At that point I stopped and they all just looked at me smiling…

I think we are socialized to believe in scarcity. Scarcity of everything – love, water, fun, food, room, freedom, on and on. It’s the driving force of capital – material acquisition, accumulation of wealth, the construction of fences around all sorts of property – digital, biological, religious. It seems rational, but is it worth it? This notion of abundance has been coming up for me in mediation. I felt lead to communicate another perspective to this young boy. What if instead of things being inherently unjust in this moment, they were actually ok, even good, even worth celebrating? “I’m mean… common man!! You’re like, 8!”

This are some of the feelings, superlatives… the qualities of my resent SF-ing:

Style and Freedom…

Hugs and Flow…

North Beach Newness!

Discovering Home.

God and Hospitality…

Love, Love, Love, Love, Love… even SEX!!

Another… “The best day of my life” … they keep coming…

And to leave, to long, to hold tears and realize the path before me requires them…

Writing Sadness

Tonight I am sad. I cry easily. I guess I’ve learned that about myself more recently. It’s interesting what brings desperation on… some sort of longing. I suppose that I’ve felt lonely since my return from San Francisco. I have friends in Chattanooga who are dear to me, but I so desperately miss those relationships in San Francisco. I have access to myself there. I am particularly awake, moved, thinking, open. I am, when I am in relationship. When I spend time with special friends from grad school I have a unique ability to access parts of myself that in other company is lost… or at least un-expressed. My heart and body are open in San Francisco because the communities that surround me are practicing the same life-styles, convictions, testimonies. And I miss this… I miss the body that I held just a week ago. I miss her. I miss my history there, the gifts there.

As I retired to bed this evening I heard my dad whistle. He is happy that his son has returned. My family held a lingering doubt that I might not return to Chattanooga having left for a short stay in San Francisco. I did not doubt I would return. I felt the most subtle sense of resentment course through my body when I heard my dad whistle. He is pleased with me. I have pleased my father. The life he is pleased with he understands. It’s a scripted life – the life of a teacher. It is known, understood, approved, celebrated within the networks of a bio-political order of normalcy.

I spent so many years in resistance to conformity. The very people, places, techniques, and cultures that I found intriguing, stimulating, exceptional where those not understood by the likes of my father but by those who held a deeply refined spirit of recognition, those who where committed to alternative legacies – my professors, my colleagues.

I have sought stability. I just wasn’t prepared for how difficult my heart would take it. Adulthood. Transitions. Even…sobriety. How beautiful it is…

Sooo… I prepare for school tomorrow. It’s late, my clothes are in the dryer, and I’ve been weeping on the stairs. I’m grateful to be writing. It is a practice I treasure that has been far from me of late.