Brave New Writing

ES Session 6: Week

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one most adaptable to change.” – Charles Darwin

The scientist in me really loves this quote. Approximately 2 months ago, the world began to change rapidly. We had a call to action to adapt all our lives; for school, this meant moving our community online.

There have been many tough moments. While it is easy to get bogged down in them, it helps to focus on the silver lining. This is a time of innovation. A chance to explore new methods and re-discover the tried and true. For me, this means an opportunity to develop a new Writer’s Workshop.

In this Writer’s Workshop, heroes enter the world of science fiction. They have a mission: saving the town from radioactive sheep, surviving severe weather, or escaping the sphinx. The missions themselves are examples of science fiction and they provide a launch point for heroes to develop their own stories.

The gameboards are flexible and adaptive: heroes can complete missions at their own pace. They can choose to write many stories or focus intently on one story. Heroes chose topics ranging from astronauts to animals. The primary goal is to write! To use their imagination to create a new world.

Perhaps you need a little escapism at the moment. Here is an underwater adventure by one of the ES heroes:

Once upon a time…There was a sea turtle named Shelly and a seahorse named Zoom Zoom. Their friendship was highly unusual in the ocean world, because Zoom Zoom was the smallest of all 53 species of seahorses. In fact Zoom Zoom was less than 1inch tall! Shelly was a Leatherback sea turtle which is the largest type of sea turtle in the ocean. She was more than 7 feet long! So they really had a special relationship. Like most Leatherbacks, Shelly had great eyesight and an excellent sense of smell. That is how Shelly found Zoom Zoom one day after her 10,000 mile journey across the ocean that year. Their friendship began in a beautiful coral reef off the coast of California two years ago. The day they met, a current pushed Zoom Zoom onto Shelly’s back. At first, she did not know that a seahorse was on her back because he was so tiny! When Zoom Zoom tried to get off of Shelly’s back, Shelly then noticed the movement of Zoom Zoom, and they started to talk. They have had many adventures together ever since. 

One day, while they were swimming side by side, they spotted some litter.They both noticed that ocean pollution and litter was getting worse and worse lately. In fact, some parts of their stunning, colorful coral reef were actually turning white, and dying. Many species of fish had gone away looking for new homes.

Shelly went to try to move the litter away from the reef, but Zoom Zoom was worried. Zoom Zoom tried to stop Shelly, but she was already hard at work. Shelly was picking up a plastic ring and tried to throw it out of the reef, but a big strong current thrust it right back to Shelly. It landed around Shelly’s neck! She tried to take it off, but it was stuck! Zoom Zoom tried to help pull the ring off, but the ring would not budge.

Zoom Zoom went to get help, but while he was gone a fisherman’s boat came bobbing through the water. Some men were in the boat. They put a net around Shelly, and hoisted her into the boat. Shelly saw something gleaming in one of the fisherman’s hands, it was a knife! Shelly tried to squirm away but they held her tight, but then Shelly felt the plastic ring getting looser and looser around her neck, they were cutting the plastic ring off her neck!

Meanwhile Zoom Zoom had gotten help but he did not see Shelly anywhere! He looked for her all day, and was about to go back home to go to bed when he heard something. He swam towards the sound and found Shelly! He thought Shelly was in danger because the fishermen still had the knife in his hand. He tried to cause big waves to throw shelly out of the boat, but he could only make little splashes. 

Just then the fishermen put Shelly back in the water, and the friends swam away. Shelly told Zoom Zoom that the fishermen were helping her get out from the plastic ring, and showed Zoom Zoom that the ring was now gone! They swam back to their houses, said good night, and went to bed.   

 TVS Heroes are brilliant and adaptive. They jump into new challenges, just like this one!      

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