The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

Minneapolis


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Otis Environmental Author Inspires Students

Speaker reveals writing strategies
Nezhukumatahil+cites+her+book+during+her+interview.
Steven Cao
Nezhukumatahil cites her book during her interview.

“I wish I had one answer. I never know what I’m going to write when I sit down at the desk,” Otis Environmental Author Aimee Nezhukumatathil stated. “I always start with an image and work from there I didn’t know exactly where it was going.” 

Her strategy is in contrast to her colleague, co-author, and friend Ross Gay, with whom she had a talk on April 24, in the midst of her multi-campus visit that included speaking at assembly earlier that day. In that talk, she shared an essay where her boys were asking her questions about random things as they were taking part in a bird count, but also asking deep questions, such as “‘Why is there violence?’ ‘Why are there lockdown drills?’ ‘Why are some people meant to go away?’” 

To this, she realized, “I didn’t have a lot of answers, but wanted to collect them. It was the first time my boys talked to me about race. They asked me, ‘Will I be white or brown when I grow up?’” Such is the nature of wonder in our world that even with the most light-hearted moments come deep and complicated moments. 

Speaking further about this, she believes that writing the book “World of Wonder,” “gave me time to reflect and think about my place in this world.” She hopes that her book “calls back a sense of childhood and wonder,” and as to her definition of wonder, she defines it as “that sense of curiosity, but with a smile. An enjoyment of learning.” 

To guide wonder and the pursuit of knowledge, Nezhukumatathil suggests, “You shouldn’t want to be the master of knowledge. We see what happens when some adults think they know it all… they’re pretty insufferable.” On the topic of how she keeps wonder, she said: “[Wonder] is a practice… I would say that I just never stop being a student… When I visited the Pre-K class they had a lot of questions, and I guess I just never stopped asking questions.” She had a new book, “Bite by Bite,” came out on April 30 in which she explores “the origins of where we get our food and I wanted to take a deep dive into how we get our food,” continuing a theme of wonder and questioning.

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About the Contributors
Ben Aviles, Staff Writer
Hi! I am Ben Aviles and I am a freshman. I thoroughly enjoy writing and am extremely excited to be able to write for Spectrum this year. Other things I enjoy outside of school are soccer, running, and reading.
Steven Cao
Steven Cao, Copy Editor
My name is Steven Cao and I am a sophomore. I started writing articles for Spectrum during freshman year and I am an editor this year. I've previously edited the "Things To Do" Page. I am currently the Copy Editor and edit both the Sports and Variety pages. Outside of school, I enjoy playing tennis competitively and reading DC comics.  My favorite part of being in Spectrum is being able to communicate and work with others.

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