the School of the Future...
Room a few minutes before
the Master’s Board members arrived
completion of the design, manufacturing, construction
and installation phase of the Collaboration Studio
was accomplished Monday September 20, 2004.
There were, of course, some items to be
finished over the next two weeks.
I arrived on site Tuesday the 21st to help with
set up; the use of the environment commenced
with teacher, student
parent sessions Thursday and Friday conducted by
Gail, myself and Tom Rudmik, Master’s founder.
DesignShop preparations took place over the
the first DesignShop was conducted Monday, Tuesday
and Wednesday. The focus of this DesignShop was:
of the Future; the new Master’s Campus (and
the ongoing development and migration from the existing
the creation of the ENTERPRISE that will
take what is created in the project Phases [link] to
a global scale. There were other celebrations and
to follow the DesignShop. This
period, through October 7th,
and the capital campaign for the new school.
web page documents these proceedings. These activities
are the launch of a NavCenter which is both a serious
and a celebration. Initial steps are important
as they set the precedent for all that follows.
is a time of intense discovery. No matter how
thoroughly planned these environments, they are always
of surprises and hidden potentials. NavCenters are
emergent as is the
process that takes place within them.
following e-mail written on September 18th to Paul
Graham sets a context for this process. The reference
layers [link] was
in response to his surprise as the installation of
the WorkFurniture pieces
started to achieve an uncommon, in his experience,
measure of environmental synergy.
18 Sep 2004 05:41:24 EDT
Subject: Re: work in progress
approach uses layers of architectural
elements until a place is
created that is simple and complex
at the same time.
Anywhere you stand, there is foreground,
middle-ground and background. Prospect
and refuge. The layering is three dimensional
-- up and down as well as horizontal.
This makes the space seem intimate
at the same time. There is interest
everywhere -- all the senses are stimulated.
lighting will be variable and provide
shadow like a forest. There is no distinction
between utility and art. The iconic
references are not traditional so the
becomes itself (self-aware, “complete”)
with connections to other idioms without
being a mere collection of them. This
specific design is “edgy” --
it pushes the envelop (literally) it
is what you
want people to be when the work in
it. It is supportive but “unforgiving.” It
demands. It requires that you be alert.
Yet, there will a niche in it, somewhere,
where almost everyone will find a “home” to
feel protected and safe.
room, then, is time out of
time, a world
of its own and a place to design
new worlds. To act conventionally
within it would be a rebuke. In this
space (to connect back). You cannot
bring and hold a day-to-day mentality
it. This is an active, living art
that you work in. It wants
your best. It
gives what it asks for. It says that
demands can be met and that the best
within you can find expression. You
must tap into
yourself and find what only you have
and bring it as a gift to the world.
it is so compact and tight, you
are connected intimately with
everyone else in the environment.
GroupGenius® even though people
working on “different” things.
It also is a memory. Can you think
back now to
what these two rooms were, what
they stood for and what happened
does this seem? How does this make
you think about the path we are
have to operate this space as a sacred
place. A place where
are conceived, engineered and
made real. Ideas birthed and “practiced” so
that they can go out into a world
that may be hostile to them yet
by the memory of their conception.
pushed everyone to their limits with
this project. It is a small
it is full of latent ideas
and dreams. It
is a symbol of Master’s
-- the Master’s
of today and of tomorrow. A celebration
of what has been done and a symbol
of what is to be done.
It is a tribute to you and Tom that
you have been able to ride this Tiger
and bring it to a safe harbor. It took
a great deal of trust and integrity.
It is just now that what is being created
is beginning (just a little) to show
itself. There was -- is -- no way to
explain it on paper. Over the next couple
of weeks, we will breath life into our
little creation as it helps us imagine
our future. There will be no way to explain
that either. But now we have a room that
can hold the memory.
September 21st Notes:
in Calgary 5:30 pm. Paul picked me up and we drove
directly to Master’s. Tom, Paul, Jeff and
I reviewed the the Collaboration Studio and did
of things to fix and projects to do later after
the DesignShop. The environment was still not cleaned
up as final work
going with a number of trades: painting, electrical,
for the entry doors and so on. We decided to delay
the raised seating installation was until
due to the risk that it might not be completed
prior to the event. There were
a number of small problems to be addressed with
one built flaw - we worked out some adjustments
for this that brought it into an acceptable range.
a bad result given that the team was new, the time
pressure of the project was intense and the complexity
of the design was high. I am very pleased with
the result. This
going to be a great space once it is “practiced.” We
set Wednesday as the day to work
through punch list
do cleaning, plant, art and book buying, and setting
them in place; and, designing and getting set
use with students and
Thursday. Gail and Patsy arrived late Tuesday to
be part of the planning process for the Thursday
sessions as well
as the DesignShop walk
over the weekend. Most of the KnowledgeWorkers were
scheduled for Friday and Saturday arrivals.
toured the Imagination Studio which is almost
finished and then went to dinner - our last moment
of relaxation and celebration before a week and a
half of intense but fun work.
September 22nd Notes:
the next several days with Tom and met with the builder
team members to go over remaining details and punch
list items. There remained a number of items to
finish however the space began to take shape as revealed
by the picture above. For the first time we wrote
on the walls (our schedule) and
the Hayworth chairs (new for us) were rolled out.
I got the space partially set up and the final clean
up crew started late afternoon. Gail got into town
at 3:30 pm and met with teachers to plan the first
session with students which took place Thursday
at 1:00 pm - the first use of the Collaboration
Studio, the first NavCenter in a school.
Jeff Graham and I when shopping for plants which
afternoon just-in-time to be in placed for the
Master’s Board members preview at 7:30 pm.
When we left
diner, the entry doors were being hung and made ready
for glazing, the painter was applying final coats
and touch up here and there. The two photos (above
and below) were taken about 4:30 in the afternoon.
Bed time was 11:42 pm ending a totally satisfactory
day. Thursday started at 5:30 am.
September 23d Notes:
of first use. The 5th
grade class came in to work a project they have
Geographic. The Master’s Board and key
supporters came in the evening. The two sessions
combined to produce
a memorial day.
graders at work
the first uses of the Master’s Collaboration Studio
the first NavCenter in a School
for the Board members (past and present)
way prior to the arrival of Master’s Board
members. The light tube above the rolling book case
late afternoon September sun. In background is the
“Teacher’s Lounge” portion of the
Collaboration Studio. This
can be accessed by a separate door when the folding
panels between it and the Entry and the WorkWall
to the Radiant Room are all closed. The Studio has ENTRY
yet this configuration also can be rearranged in
a variety of ways as required by the work while maintaining
intersection between Jeff’s POD and the entry
into the Radian Room (when the Radiant Wall has
its back to the front area). This is the first introduction
to vertical space. The plants arrived and
had been placed in their new home an hour before
the evening ceremony began. Books arrived
a matter of minutes before our guests. Plants bring
life to the environment; books, intellect, challenge and
history. Everything in a NavCenter has
utility, contributes to the aesthetic of place and
delivers a distinct message.
first Board members arrive in the early evening.
Gail and Tom are in the foreground helping to introduce
the environment. The entry to the Radiant Room shown
above is just to the right of this scene - Both prospect
and refuge is abundantly present throughout the space.
showing the main skylight. “When
I see people’s surprise and delight upon encountering
features such as this I do not know to laugh
or cry. Where have we got to that the amenity of
natural light brought to the center of a space
is unusual and special?
under the dome. The focused acoustical effect of
the dome was noted. The raised natural carpet sitting
When it is completed, the feeling
of this part of the space
will be that of a casual, relaxed place for
dialog, reading and thought.
introduced the room and give his thanks for the
significant contribution made by the many people
necessary to make this happen. Gail and I shared
stories of MG Taylor’s history and what the
purpose of the Studio is. The coming DesignShop goals
were reviewed. There followed a dialog on why the
Studio was designed as it is
and comments by the Board.
the end of both the student and Board sessions we
asked what the space said to them. The 5th
Everywhere I look I see design. And, the
last time I was in this room it was a presentation
room; we were presented to; now, we are the presentation.
I like the wood, my family is into wood - it
is our tradition; it is the grain. And, the
space goes on and on one place leading into another
Board Members: This
is a safe place. I am relaxed here.
It is peaceful. With both groups there were
many questions about the “blue
fins” (on the Armature [link])
a lively discussion about acoustics, refracting light,
color spectrum, layers of prospect and refuge and
the pattern: “room
within a room.”
were two aspects of these experiences that stood
out. First, that the 5th graders and the Board members
understood the space more or less equally. Second,
that both appreciated the result for the right reasons.
Both had a very sophisticated understanding of what
was done and why. Of course this pleased me no end.
It also made me wonder why there is so much architecture”
being built that in no way expresses the principles
that we discussed. How can this be?
September 24th Notes:
Teacher Development Day; the staff was
introduced to the Collaboration Studio and, in
the afternoon, worked in teams further developing
out of last years DesignShop (an RDS in the Gym).
was a good day but perhaps not as powerful as
it could have been. We (MG Taylor and Master’s
Sponsors) simply did not have the time to plan
it out. There
was more Explaining than necessary and
not as much
Experience as there could have been.
The Five Es of Education [link: the 5 es of education] were
not as balanced as I would have wished. That
said, the day ended with a great deal of energy
the projects and understanding of the Collaboration
Studio’s mission were advanced. The Story of
Matt and Gail and of MG Taylor Corporation was
told and this is an important aspect of passing
on the tradition of a NavCenter. The teachers
that participated in the DesignShop, and those
the event as KnowledgeWorkers, will have a much
better sense of the Collaboration Studio and
how to use it. They are the first wave of transfer.
Teachers had a debrief session the Friday after
the DesignShop to discuss it and to
review rules-of-engagement for use of the Studio
September 25th Notes:
day of organizing the environment for the DesignShop;
KnowledgeWorkers arriving and a full Sponsor
Design Session for the event was conducted mid
day. We started work on
creating a “Red Thread” [vw_members_link] based
on a number of themes central
to the DesignShop focus.
Master’s senior administrative staff, Gail and
I went to diner to celebrate our start and to
dialog regarding the work to come.
Wall scribing for the
September 26th Notes:
started the day with a StrawDog that was built
from the Saturday Sponsor session. The design held
up with just a few modifications. This made the
Sunday Sponsor session easy.
plants were purchased and set into the space and
different layouts tried out to match the StrawDog.
Other than the simple set ups used for the students
on Thursday the Teachers day on Friday, this was
the first exploration of
space can be adjusted, in real time, to support
the work within.
Finally, the lighting was adjusted for the various
given that fact that we were both bringing up a
NavCenter and designing a DesignShop, we all
managed to get back to the hotel by 11 pm. Given
the activities of the prior days, we were all
ready for bed. For many of us, this was the third
DesignShop within a month all held in different
cities - there had been no step down time for most
of the team.
September 27th Notes:
One - SCAN - of the first DesignShop
in the Collaboration Studio. It is not easy to
describe any DesignShop let alone this one. Weeks
ago, when we sent out the invitations to this event
we did not know how this group would “assemble” itself.
Master’s put out the “bird call” to
a diverse number of people the majority of which
did not know one another. At first, it looked like
the attendance would be scanty.
Then the energy started to build and those attending
turned out to be almost perfect for the work that
At the beginning, Tom charged
a revolution in learning and so the work began.
magic this group turned out to be became apparent
with the first exercise. We asked everyone to take
a HyperTile and
think about and write who they were and what unique
gifts they brought to this emerging community.
Each participant “played” their
Glass Bead [link] on
the Radiant Wall [link] -
each building off each other’s Tiles. This
first exercise demonstrated that we
had a critical mass in the room necessary for accomplishing
our task [link].
this “introduction” to ourselves, we
moved on to creating a Scenario of the
past, present and future. This work always reveals
the (sometimes hidden) Design
a group brings to their work. There is no question
that this assemblage of people are underestimating
the scope and rate of change coming in the future;
What is clear from their work, however, is the
positive attitude and creative response they bring
to the challenge of the future and the depth of
the values they
hold. These are far more important factors than
any “technical understanding”
of the future. After the group Scenario, teams
developed the scenario
further, wrote and explored Scenario
Challenges in which various “what ifs” were
presented and answered. Then, each individual did Take-A-Panel and
presented their perspective on the future of education,
Master’s Campus and the use and exist
strategy of the existing Master’s facility.
Included in this exercise where questions related
development of the ENTERPRISE necessary
to accomplish what we are aiming for.
of the things that always fascinates me about people
in DesignShops is how beautiful they are when they
are fully engaged in a collaborative, creative
process, They come alive in ways that are (unfortunately)
not common to the daily workplace.
difference, between the “normal” work environment
and the NavCenter, is dramatic and becomes more
so as time progresses. This can be seen in body
language, facial expression, tone of voice and the
intensity of focus over extended hours of work.
started the event with an overview of Master’s
vision and a challenge to all to recreate the concept
of learning in the 21st Century.
Glass Bead Game reports revealed the high level of
creativity and artistic talent among the participant-designers.
This is not unusual. However, this module drew
it out quickly and made it apparent to all.
always amazes me how little time we spend,
as a society, thinking about the future. Our
becomes ever shorter even as the impacts of
what we do reaches out further and further
into the future. We are compiling a greater
and greater inventory of social liabilities
most of which could have been avoided without
paying a very great price. Now, the bills are
coming due and they look to be enormous. And,
at the same time, we continue to underutilize
the enormous assets we have created.
critical part of the SCAN is to get everyone to
be come clear on just what their view of the
future is and and their vision of it also.
We want them to share these viewpoints, and
play with the implications of them, before
taking on, directly, the work that they “came
here to do.”
this is resisted as a waste of time. As if
a few hours of unfettered thinking about the
world we are creating is not practical. This
group embraced the exercise and took it on
with a high level of gusto - “This Future Is
For You!” (to turn a phrase.
first sharing is intimate. Everyone has the
opportunity to express themselves and their
agenda without interruption or debate. A common
language is built in an unforced way; mutual
respect gained as each learns the depth and
nuance of each other’s experience and thinking.
is a liberating experience and one not typically
found in the modern workplace where the creed
of utilitarianism still rules. It is the UTILITY of where we are headed as a society that I
most question [link].
unnoticed, the SCAN gets more specific
- it is a genital glide from “abstract” issues
circling around the work at hand until it lands
directly on it at the of the day. By this
time most of the participant-designers have
worked together in small teams. They have now
been “introduced.” everyone has their own unique
approach to creative work. Unfortunately, in
a group, the “styles” most often clash. What
the DesignShop does is to offer a
process that is natural and aligns the creative
of each participant-designer so that they become
synchronized. Content is left free. Energy
the end of the day the energy is focused and
the teams are working to articulate their VISION of
education and the Master’s opportunity.
The journey has begun.
first test of space flexibility came early in the
DesignShop in the Group Scenario exercise.
The Scenario had a deliberately (designed)
loose time line. The past and the present sections
of it filled the entire curved Radiant Wall (which
is six, four feet panels in this facility).
There was no space for the future, the most important
of this exercise. I asked the participants to roll
their chairs over to one side of the room and pulled
the twenty foot folding WorkWall out - the exercise
continued without hardly a pause. This was a dramatic
demonstration of space configuring to the work rather
than the usual circumstance of the work
process conforming to the space. For the Collaboration
Studio we specified a Hayworth rolling, stack-able
chair. This is the first “modern” chair [link] we
that meets our requirements and also extends the
flexibility factor [link].
I am sure we will use it again in other projects
now under development [link].
reporting the work from the earlier Modules, the
participants where rearranged (yet again) into
new teams and asked to develop their vision of
learning in the 21st Century, of Master’s, the
to the existing facility and the what kind of enterprise
we needed to build in order to have global impact.
on this until 8 pm, slept on it, developed the work
further Tuesday morning and reported it out at
9 am to start
Two. This completed the Scan and set the stage for Focus.
September 28th Notes:
Two - FOCUS. The purpose of the Focus
day is to Create the Problem. This is
true in every DesignShop. Often “the problem” is
confused with conditions [link].
Too often, people think that the problem is the
barriers that they face. To us, a problem is a
“good” thing and it is composed of the following
parts: a clear vision of where you want to be;
understanding of your present positions; an accurate
accounting of the blocks that are in your way and
the assets that you possess ; a design strategy to
overcome, circumvent, neutralize or turn to advantage
these blocks; and, defined projects - the
completion of which - make the design strategy
actionable. A “good” problem is definable, solvable,
useful when solved and something that you have
a great deal of passion to do. Without this passion,
the inevitable “slings and arrows of outrageous
fortune” will win.
design of Day Two was simple. Finish the VISION Design
team work from Day One and report it out. Then,
have a group dialog - our first. Break into Design
teams to look at each of our subject areas: 21st
Century Learning, the New Campus,
Campus potential and Exit Strategies, the Enterprise (necessary
to do the project and to scale the effort), the Learning
Environment (in general), the Learning
Process (in general) and Learning Tools (in
general). The teams worked, reported their results
and we had another group dialog on the implications
of what was emerging. We then did Why it Won’t
Work and went into new Teams to Create
the Problem in general and subject area terms.
Designer Participants went home at 6 pm (what I
call a MSD: miserably short day!) and several
stayed to work with some Master’s
friends and parents to refine ideas related to
the capital campaign scheduled to launch on October
are many fears that people can legitimately hold
in regards the prospect of truly collaborating
on a complex and multiyear project. It is easy,
in the prevalent social world that now exists,
the results of creative genius to be robbed and
compromised by the system in place. I shared
an example of this [link] as
an out come we were not going to experience.
unfortunate reality is a consequence of the structure in
which most work. STRUCTURE WINS and
this structure is largely designed by default.
To design an alternative, people must be in an
alternative and this fact makes up the essence
of what A DesignShop is about.
The FOCUS process
is always a roller coaster ride. In SCAN,
we often challenge the participant/designers
to rethink their paradigm.
In FOCUS, they challenge themselves.
DesignShop was no exception. The very premise
of why Master’s was building a new school was
tested as was the nature of the urban setting
the new Campus should both be in and create by
its presence. These are not simple questions nor
do they make for easy dialogs.
every design assumption is necessary for understanding
and essential to creating the right problem.
Problems, once clear, are not that difficult to
solve. Getting the right problem in mind is the
real challenge. This DesignShop is the first of
many to come as we identify the many options before
us, create the many programs and projects that,
together, add up to the VISION we hold
and the future it will reveal. Growing a ValueWeb
capable of accomplishing this vision, which is
both fixed in theory and emergent in practice,
is the main task ahead. A ValueWeb is not the simple
assemblage of the “logical” players - it is the
result of a self selection process that is tempered
by candid dialog and common experience. The DesignShop
does not plan a ValueWeb - it practices one
work is both exciting and stressful. We design
the environments the way we do to stimulate the
imagination and to mitigate stress. The environment
adjusts to the work not just in the spatial sense
but also in the mood that is set. It reflects
the time of day, has the variety found in nature
but rarely inside a building and exemplifies
behavior that is congruent with people are being
asked to do. This is not a place (in
spirit, process or physical statement) where
compromise comes easy. It is a place where hearing
one another, building on one another’s ideas and
reaching for synergies that go beyond what each
can do alone comes easy.
on schedule, the statue that symbolizes Master’s
vision arrived during our Focus day. On the Radiant
Wall the yellow stickys are color coded
with green, yellow and red tags. Each individual
had placed on the last report out tiles personally
signed comments that said yes! go! (green); caution,
about this (yellow); beware! stop! (red). We call
this Module Why is won’t work. The
point of it is to surface every reason why we can
fail in our
mission. The task to follow is to make sure that
we answer every one of these questions
be they of external or internal circumstance.
statue, of which this is a replica, is provocative.
At the base is a young boy “dreaming” with a book
in his hand. He is, without doubt dreaming of flight
- his experience of FLIGHT - which the
rest of the statue portrays. This image fits the
can seek, find and reach their highest potential
and that the task of education is to support and
facilitate this happening. The unlimited potential
of each child to reach their best expression in
life is at the core of Master’s learning methods.
Creativity and innovation, a something integral
to life and work for all people is what fuels both
Master’s and MG Taylor’s vision, methods and practices.
This is the basis of our partnership.
challenge that I gave our designers was this: do
your work, in Defining the Problem [link],
such that we
never have to tell this child that he cannot
fly. Of course no one likes to admit it but
this is the message that is delivered
to millions of children everyday all over the world.
September 29th Notes:
Three - ACT - This is the day to think
in terms of action. Some think that Scan, Focus,
Act equates to Strategy, Tactics, Task - that is,
high level concepts to specifics. Not so; Scan,
Focus, Act are modalities. The content in all stages
of the process has to cover the most broad to
the most minute. The
MODE, however shifts how you
treat the material and what you do with
it. The charge in the ACT day is to design, decide,
know and to time line out the actions necessary
to accomplishing the mission. This includes detailing
action steps about the unknowns. If it cannot be
decided, then, what do we have to know?
How will gather the necessary to knowledge
to know? When do we have to
it? What are the steps necessary to do
reporting out our CREATING THE PROBLEM exercise
from the day before, we identified what was necessary
for our work to be a success and then picked Buckets
of Work to do so with each designer choosing
the team they wanted to spend the rest of their
transition between FOCUS and ACT is
an abrupt shift in energy.
me the dialog around selecting the Buckets
of Work is always fascinating. The real conversation
is not so much around the Buckets themselves;
it is about the underlying issues. In “merely”
selecting the Buckets, much deeper aspects of the
work are being sorted out,
is the way a single mind works: on one level
a systematic process; on the other, a far richer
and complex process, accession millions of connections,
is happening. the DesignShop is an architecture that
facilitates a group of people so that they can
function more like a single I. We call this GroupGenius.
Solutions emerge [link].
makes ValueWebs WORK is this functional
alignment: individual mind to DesignShop designers
to ValueWeb - all recursive levels of the same
Conventional methods neither understand no facilitate
this result. This is why they fail when faced with
broad-scale systemic challenges. And, almost everything
critical, interesting and worth doing in our time
IS a system issue or closely connected to one.
All the easy stuff has been done.
is a point somewhere between late FOCUS and
ACT where the entire process escapes.
It no longer can be “designed” or “controlled.”
It captures everyone and takes the lead. This is
exactly what happens in an individual’s singular,
creative act. Everything - for a period of time
- becomes “subordinate” to a super
ordinate goal. This happened after the Buckets
were selected and
I joined the New Campus Design/Build Team
for the rest of the process. The KnowledgeWorkers
took over stewarding the DesignShop. This gave
me the opportunity to to meet my future team mates
in a different relationship. While in the process
of designing the ValueWeb, a significant portion
of it formed.
was an organic, self selected process - it required
“stepping up” on the part of all.
have to form this way. They will not come together
in the same way that the alliance and joint venture
of the past did. ValueWebs can superficially
look like these old forms, however, at the root
of it, they are not related to these far more
mechanistic expressions of organization.
I was surprised how the ACT day played
out. This does not happen often. Although I had
model of the outcome in mind, I had to succumb
to the net vector that we all had been instrumental
in creating, intentionally and not, together.
was disappointed with this at the beginning of
the final reports - story telling really - until
I started to listen to what was being said. Then,
I realized how much was there and how deep each
team had actually gone. All we have to do is
organize to continue the work.
think, however, this turn in the road did not
find us fully capable of capturing all the work
that was completed. We organized what we did
capture to go into a wiki [link
for participants] and
this will facilitate the next iteration of work.
This also may turn out to be the best circumstance
- we shall see.
of the trickiest judgments in any process of
design - for individual, group, participant or
facilitator - is to know when an iteration of
work done; when it is good enough for now.
I tell my architectural students that you know
you are done with a design cycle when you cannot
get any smarter without out going out and building
on what we have created is clearly the next phase
of the project. This is how we will get smarter.
And this is how we will grow the ValueWeb. The
story of this project will be the story of its
ValueWeb. The is the key and the process cannot
have found that the peak of a DesignShops impact
is usually about a year after the event. Of course,
we will have many more exercises - large and
small - within that period. The experience will
accumulate. And, the Collaboration Studio will
be the keeper of these experiences. The pace
of implementation will start slowly yet yield
an ever increasing return. The path between
intension and heuristic search will be found
and one day
we will look back on this event and see all that
we have achieved represented in our beginning.
at the close of the event
DesignShop came to a soft landing. I had wanted
more drill down into projects, dates, specifications.
It became clear, as the day progressed, that this
was neither possible nor necessary. We had gotten
what was possible to get and what was necessary
in order that we carry on our work. I was working
with the new campus design team when
the KnowledgeWorker KreW made the call on the final
report out. The form of this invited the eight
teams, who were working various aspects of the
program, to reflect on the meaning of their work
produced. They did this by writing a future article
in Revolution Magazine,
looking back, on
the results that Master’s accomplished. All the
together, made it clear that a Revolution had
been launched and that there were specific strategies,
tactics and tasks produced by each Team.
September 30th Notes:
started early with an early meeting between Master’s
and a local group, some members of which had participated
in the DesignShop, to discuss opportunities for
sharing the new land.
The DesignShop, apparently,
some ideas. Much of the work done in the DesignShop
focused on land use and density options and this
dialog reflected this thinking. After this meeting,
Larry Mielnichuk, founder of Genesis Building Corp,
discussing the few things remaining to be done.
lighting to support more flexibility and the installation
of the seating platform being the principal work
the seating platforms started to go in. This sparked
a lively conversation as some though they were
too large. After talking about the process this
sitting arrangement represents, looking at the
Cequal BedLounge web site [link] and
after several sat on the platforms, it was decided
to leave things as they are and see if there are
any adjustments to be made later. The platforms
are large. They are the principal feature of the
“Teacher’s Lounge” portion of the space. They will
change the interaction patterns of the teachers
and of whatever design team uses them in a DesignShop
exercise. There was, originally, a pit in the upper
part of the platforms but I removed this because
it directed the focus in the wrong direction [link].
Cushions and Cequal recliners will work much better
and will be far more comfortable and flexible.
All of the materials used in this area are natural
fiber making a
healthy, comfortable place for a different kind
of experience and dialog.
space is left open for photos of the seating area
which was completed October 7th. Now we await the
back rests and a pile of cushions and we will be
television channel came by and interviewed Tom
and me, individually, for over an hour. It will
interesting to see what happens with this tape.
Tom is trying to get a copy.
spent some time with Jamal Mubdi-Bey, of Sojourner
Douglass College [link]
- he attended the DesignShop. We are developing
SDC Campus [link] in
Baltimore. SDC and Masters’s are exploring
working together to create a Charter school on
the East Baltimore area adjacent to Johns Hopkins
University. Phase II of the SDC work will create
a NavCenter at SDC for community development uses
as well as facilitating the ongoing development
of the college. Like master’s, it will be
staffed by teachers and students. Phase II will
proceed early in 2005. One aspect that is demonstrating
is that MG Taylor is reaching a level of maturity
that we are, increasingly, able to connect our
and friends to each other facilitating the emergence
of new opportunities. At this point we have three
projects focused on education: Master’s,
SDC and the University School [link] in
Nashville. We also have a relationship with SFIA
a connection to (and perhaps relationship) with
“Connecting the dots” - or ValueWeb nodes -
is very important here. The synergistic possibilities
And, all of this has relevance to what Andy Sticker
is doing at New Harmony [link].
This work is not unconnected to our work with the
World Economic forum who is interested and active
in the advancement of global education [link].
love it when a plan [link] comes
am writing these notes on the Northwest Airline
flight back to Nashville. This period, September
through today, is a benchmark in the history of
MG Taylor. This project has required a tremendous
effort. We have worked at direct cost, for product,
and no fees, for time, in order to help Master’s
get to the point that they can fund their expansion.
This has not been easy for us at this point in
our own development. It certainly has been worth
it to us. The master’s
leadership has taken great conceptual and financial
risks to get to the ability to have their own DesignShop
in their own facility. The investments in the Imagination and Collaboration Studios
have been great for a school of Master’s
size at their point in the Stages of an Enterprise [link].
It looks like that their entrepreneurial risk has
off. The feedback from partners, staff, teachers,
students, parents and the educational community
has been positive. We will all know more after
the 7th of this month when Master’s
launches its fund raising campaign. I do not see
raising money for a non-profit fundamentally any
different than seeking investment for a business
enterprise. Each is providing a value to a market
place. The only difference is the rules by which
the funds are handled. I think that Master’s
is offering value to many educational “markets” and
will be able to build the school they want and
continue to advance their superior education processes
and R&D efforts. Every indication
is that this week we did “disturb
the Universe” and
advanced - by a quantum leap - toward our mutual
vision of education
and collaborative design.
a personal note, I was accepted as Systems
Integrator [link] for the design/build process into a fine community
of architects and builders capable of producing
an incredible expression of the School of the
Future. This level of bonding is not as easy
as it might seem and I am proud that we were able
to take this step together. Now, we have to build
a true ValueWeb capable of building the new Master’s
Campus (as an example of one) and scale the effort
so that it can have global impact. To me, how we
build this project (and beyond it) is as important,
and not separated from, what we build.
built the Collaboration Studio to have a place to
dream, engineer and demonstrate the future of master’s [link].
This is the first step of an extended journey.
have come to see architecture [link] as
the result of three integrated phases: design, build and using.
Architecture [link] should
be built around a way of life and a
way of working (which
should be the expression [link] of
life itself). The joy of working with Master’s Academy
and College is this approach
is both understood, is compatible with their mission
and it is appreciated. Our work is generally
well received (although, still difficult to get
off the drawing board and made actual). I enjoyed
10 days where the work was understood, the attitude
was one of diligence (to apply the tool with integrity)
and this appreciation was expressed without guile
or affectation. This is rare and received on my part
with appreciation and grateful acceptance. Working
with Master’s has given me much that I have not received
before. There is a notable absence of conflict and
struggle. There is an attitude that strives for integrity
and excellence. There is celebration of success.
There is an absence of ego in the negative sense
of the word. There is a belief that a state of
grace can be made
real, here and now. Those that want to recreate the
future should flock to this project - it is a rare
opportunity to build an expression of a HUMAN environment.
To Collaboration Studio - Layout and
September 19, 2004
voice of this document:
BUILD TACTIC EVALUATE
September 19, 2004
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(note: this document is about 99% finished)