ammerahsaidi has written 7 posts for Cooperative Catalyst

Detroit Future in Puerto Rico

“Could you slow down–my English is good but not so good,” said a blonde woman from Germany (if I remember correctly). In a way, this woman pointing out my greatest public speaking flaw, (and the way the audience agreed with her) let me know that what we’re doing in Detroit with education is a simple … Continue reading

Mirroring Back Student Words–in Realtime

We’ve adopted another Detroit school into the Detroit Future Schools (DFS) family and we could not be happier with our new bundle—and neither could the students. “Can we think like this everyday?” one student asked after a DFS lesson was co-taught with the classroom teacher and myself. “I like this kind of learning.  There’s usually … Continue reading


While on the subway from P.S. 28 in Brooklyn to Zuccotti Park (of Occupy Wallstreet fame), Kirsten asked me, “So, what lens are looking at all of this from?” From November 2nd through November 4th, 2011, The Institute for Democratic Education organized an education innovation tour of four schools/youth programs based in New York.  I am … Continue reading

Real Education is Powerful

“You’ve got to make it about power. It IS about power.” This was the advice I gave to an instructor who wondered how she could get students to care about the work she was assigning–the same work they were ignoring. There are so many instances right now running through my head simultaneously that I’ve used … Continue reading

Knowing and I Don’t Knowing

As the coordinator for the Detroit Future Schools program, I get to visit 12 classrooms all over the Metro-Detroit area every month. Grades range from third grade up through twelfth. School focuses range from the basics to aeronautics. Class sizes ranging from ten to thirty-five students. I’m learning more right now about schooling and learning … Continue reading

Detroit Minds and Hearts

God says in the Quran, the holy book of Muslims (followers of Islam), “Truly, God does not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves” (Quran 13:11).  It was this verse that inspired several young professionals in Detroit to create the Detroit Minds and Hearts Fellowship. Change doesn’t come easy. … Continue reading

Detroit’s Future

20 teachers and artists from all around Detroit came together this past week to redefine the purpose and practice of education. At a week long retreat organized by Allied Media Projects (AMP) in Detroit and funded by the Detroit Digital Justice Coalition, adults heard from young people, listened to one another, read up on innovative … Continue reading

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