Day 52: Young Writers and Short Stories

In the morning, after our routine workout, breakfast and journal writing, we discussed the big picture of World Issues. We discussed the field, the various crisis facing the modern world, and shared the diverse jobs in international relations, ecology, cartography,and resource management. Students shared informative maps of the world with Bryan choosing a satellite image of Earth at night when the urban areas are clearly visible from their artificial light.

The students had a big day working on their own short stories. They were challenged to write a simple tale with that extra layer of sophisticated insight that we experience in the literature that we have studied. We encouraged them to follow their own creativity, focus on ideas that interest them, and -first and foremost, write something that they find entertaining.

In our evening English lesson we discussed using a Psychoanalytical Lens to approach reading. We discussed Freud and read William Carlos Williams. The students were riveted by Freud’s emphasis on irrationality and how our personalities develop before we make rational choices. We extended the lesson because they wanted to know more about Freud’s concept of The Oedipus Complex. It still stands out as an exceptional connection between the Austrian’s theories of child psychology and the success of the most famous tragedy in ancient Greek theatre. We looked in the stories that we have read this far to see if the authors believed that humans were irrational or rational beings.

We had another family dinner in the open air restaurant. Above us, a huge tough canvas catches the leaves that fall off the trees. We sit together at family picnic tables of polished wood or in chairs around tables with candlelight. It’s been tough for some to have less WiFi to connect with home but it guarantees great conversations at dinner. After dinner, everyone handed in the first draft of their own short story to get feedback tomorrow. The final draft isn’t due until Melbourne (that’s three locations away) but their minds are on fire with ideas and Kali was excited to finish writing tomorrow.

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