📚 The Learning: Passion-Based, Human-Centered Learning Compatible With Neurodiversity and the Social Model of Disability

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a boy getting bullied by classmates inside the classroom

Dehumanizing practices do not belong in schools.

The Need

The Need

Space without Behaviorism, Segregation, or Ableism

The Answer

Reframing and Respectful Connection

The Feeling

Electric Belonging and Soaring Inclusion

The Learning

Passion-Based, Human-Centered Learning Compatible With Neurodiversity and the Social Model of Disability

Young girl in headphones plugged into a paper book, evoking ear reading and multi-modality learning.

The Gift

We have created a system that has you submit yourself, or your child, to patient hood to access the right to learn differentlyThe right to learn differently should be a universal human right that’s not mediated by a diagnosis.

📚 The Learning: Passion-Based, Human-Centered Learning Compatible With Neurodiversity and the Social Model of Disability

Learning is rooted in purpose finding and community relevance.

  1. Map a Path to Purpose
  2. Learn Experientially
  3. Connect to the Community
  4. Promote Literacy
  5. Create Cross-Disciplinary Classrooms

Social justice is the cornerstone to educational success.

  1. Support a Reflective Space
  2. Demand Inclusive Spaces
  3. Authenticate Student Voice
  4. Adopt Critical Pedagogy
  5. Utilize Restorative Justice

Dehumanizing practices do not belong in schools.

  1. Radically Reduce Homework
  2. Build Strong Relationships
  3. Eliminate Grading
  4. Redefine Assessment and End Testing
  5. Reform Food Systems

Learners are respectful toward each other’s innate human worth.

  1. Self-Direct Learning
  2. Support and Elevate Teachers
  3. Stay Buzzword Free
  4. Cooperate, Don’t Force Competition
  5. Support Multi-Age Classrooms

Source: The Need

An infographic showing HRP values in a solar system formation, with the HRP logo at the center and four quadrants: I: Learning is rooted in purpose-finding and community relevance with map a path to purpose; create cross-disciplinary, multi-age classrooms; learn experientially; promote literacy; connect to the community. II: Social justice is the cornerstone to educational success with demand anti-racist, inclusive spaces; authenticate student voice; reimagine spaces & promote free play; adopt critical pedagogy & build democratic schools; utilize restorative justice. III: Dehumanizing practices do not belong in school with eliminate grading; redefine assessment & end testing; build strong relationships; reform food systems; radically reduce homework. IV: Learners are respectful toward each other's innate human worth with self-direct learning; support & elevate teachers; cooperate, don't force competition; prioritize mental health & social-emotional learning; ensure a thriving public education.
Pictured: An infographic showing HRP values in a solar system formation, with the HRP logo at the center and four quadrants: I: Learning is rooted in purpose-finding and community relevance with map a path to purpose; create cross-disciplinary, multi-age classrooms; learn experientially; promote literacy; connect to the community. II: Social justice is the cornerstone to educational success with demand anti-racist, inclusive spaces; authenticate student voice; reimagine spaces & promote free play; adopt critical pedagogy & build democratic schools; utilize restorative justice. III: Dehumanizing practices do not belong in school with eliminate grading; redefine assessment & end testing; build strong relationships; reform food systems; radically reduce homework. IV: Learners are respectful toward each other’s innate human worth with self-direct learning; support & elevate teachers; cooperate, don’t force competition; prioritize mental health & social-emotional learning; ensure a thriving public education.
Hey, you ever stop to think that maybe we're all different?
Or that you can't just throw every student into the same system
Just examine resources and where they're placin' em
I'm just saying there's different students out there facing some pain
It's completely unfair to expect that they would behave the same
But go ahead, make it harder for one and watch them play the game

-- Imaginary Numbers

⛺️🔥 Come As You Are to Cavendish Space

pattern branches tree design

niche construction may be every bit as important for survival as natural selection 

Reimagining Inclusion with Positive Niche Construction

We create Cavendish bubbles of peer respite and collaborative niche construction where we can find relief from an intense world designed against us.

Since reading NeuroTribes, we think of psychologically & sensory safe spaces suited to zone work as “Cavendish bubbles” and “Cavendish space”, after Henry Cavendish, the wizard of Clapham Common and discoverer of hydrogen. The privileges of nobility afforded room for his differences, allowing him the space and opportunity to become “one of the first true scientists in the modern sense.”

Let’s build psychologically safe homes of opportunity without the requirement of nobility or privilege. Replace the trappings of the compliance classroom with student-created context, BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), and BYOC (Bring/Build Your Own Comfort). Let’s hit thrift stores, buy lumber, apply some hacker ethos, and turn the compliance classroom into something psychologically safe and comfortable to a team of young minds engaged in passion-based learning. Inform spaces with neurodiversity and the social model of disability so that they welcome and include all minds and bodies. Provide quiet spaces for high memory state zone work where students can escape sensory overwhelm, slip into flow states, and enjoy a maker’s schedule. Provide social spaces for collaboration and camaraderie. Create cave, campfire, and watering hole zones. Develop neurological curb cuts. Fill our classrooms with choice and comfort, instructional tolerance, continuous connectivity, and assistive technology. In other words, make space for Cavendish. Make spaces for both collaboration and deep work.

In other words, make space for Cavendish. Make spaces for both collaboration and deep work.

Classroom UX: Designing for Pluralism

We provide caves, campfires, and watering holes so that dandelions, tulips, and orchids alike can find respite. Everyone has individual space as well as community spaces so that they can progressively socialize according to their interaction capacity. Caves, campfires, and watering holes are necessary to designing for neurological pluralism and providing psychological safety. They’re necessary to positive niche construction.

bonfire

The campfire is a space where people gather to learn from an expert. In the days of yore, wise elders passed down insights through storytelling, and in doing so replicated culture for the next generation.

Australia’s Campfires, Caves, and Watering Holes

The cave is a private space where an individual can think, reflect, and transform learning from external knowledge to internal belief. 

Australia’s Campfires, Caves, and Watering Holes

The cave is a private space, where students can find that much needed alone time useful for reflection on their learning or just to recharge. (a necessary space for those students with Aspergers).

Campfires, Caves and Watering holes | Libraries, Youth and the Digital Age
photo of man sitting on a cave
elephant-herd-of-elephants-african-bush-elephant-africa-59989.jpeg
The watering hole is an informal space where peers can share information and discoveries, acting as both learner and teacher simultaneously. This shared space can serve as an incubator for ideas and can promote a sense of shared culture.It is an informal area, where students can share in collaborative learning experiences.

“Some autistic people’s needs will conflict with each other. For example, some autistic people may need the TV playing to calm down, as it can help to focus on specific sounds. But for others this may cause more stress depending on their mental state. Additionally, some autistic people may need to stim to feel relaxed and comfortable, or it may be involuntary when they are stressed, but noises they make (e.g. verbal stims), could really stress another autistic person out. I think the key here is space.”

“It’s Not Rocket Science” – NDTi

…positive niche construction is a strengths-based approach to educating students with disabilities. Armstrong describes positive niche construction in this way:

In the field of biology, the term niche construction is used to describe an emerging phenomenon in the understanding of human evolution. Since the days of Darwin, scientists have emphasized the importance of natural selection in evolution-the process whereby organisms better adapted to their environment tend to survive and produce more offspring. In natural selection, the environment represents a static entity to which a species must either adapt or fail to adapt. In niche construction, however, the species acts directly upon the environment to change it, thereby creating more favorable conditions for its survival and the passing on of its genes. Scientists now say that niche construction may be every bit as important for survival as natural selection (Lewontin, 2010; Odling-Smee, Laland, & Feldman, 2003).

We see many examples of niche construction in nature: a beaver building a dam, bees creating a hive, a spider spinning a web, a bird building a nest. All of these creatures are changing their immediate environment in order to ensure their survival. Essentially, they’re creating their own version of a “least restrictive environment.” 

Reimagining Inclusion with Positive Niche Construction
Come as you are, however broken
And we will see if we can make you whole again
Come as you are, with your heart wide open
Bridges that you've burned they are still there just floatin'

If I am meant for anything it's to show you you're not alone

--Come As You Are by Zach Bryan

♿️⚖️ We Create Anti-Ableist Space

It is time to celebrate our interdependence!

Collaboration allows us to create genuinely safe spaces.

The Beauty of Collaboration at Human Scale: Timeless patterns of human limitations

It is time to celebrate our interdependence! Collaboration allows us to create genuinely safe spaces for autistic and otherwise neurodivergent people. We should expect society to support us in establishing new forms of creative collaboration, and we should not be forced individually to be “included” in toxic exploitative environments.

The Beauty of Collaboration at Human Scale: Timeless patterns of human limitations

We create anti-ableist space for passion-based, human-centered learning compatible with neurodiversity and the social model of disability. We create space for those most ill-served by “empty pedagogy, behaviorism, and the rejection of equity“.

Create more anti-ableist spaces.
Let’s act to hold ALL spaces accountable for providing care and access to disabled folks with all types of bodies and minds.

Jen White-Johnson

We can start building more accessible, care-centered communities now. We can combat ableism now. We can lay the groundwork for a world that works better for all of us.

Dr. Sami Schalk on Twitter

From Our Philosophy

We need to have universally designed systems designed around the reality of human variance opposed to the myth of human sameness.

It’s not a problem in the person; it’s not a problem with the difference; it’s a problem in the interaction between a difference and a context built for the myth that we should all be the same.

Accommodation is fundamentally about not changing the person but changing the environment around the person.

Accessibility is a collective process!

When we build things – we must think of the things our life doesn’t necessitate. Because someone’s life does.

standing on a corner, watching the parade go by
hear the people gossip but i don’t pay them no mind
like busy little bees buzzing around a hive
and no one notices the clouds in the sky

take my life but who would care
when you don’t fit in anywhere
now i’m not asking you to understand
why i don’t fit in anywhere

like a diamond a stone so rare i don’t fit in anywhere!

anywhere anywhere i don’t fit in anywhere
anywhere anywhere i don’t fit in anywhere

--I Don’t Fit in Anywhere by Jayne County

👏🧷🌳 Stimpunks Foundation Presents: Stimpunks Space

worms eyeview of green trees

Space

The spaces where we belong do not exist. We build them with radical love and revolutionary liberation.

Gayatri Sethi, Unbelonging

Stimpunks Space is where we actualize our philosophy.

At Stimpunks Space

Online: Bringing Safety to the Serendipity

Online, we bring safety to the serendipity with our distributed community and communication stack. Chance favors the connected mind. Our learners connect using 1:1 laptops and indie ed-tech. We give our learners real laptops with real capabilities, and we fill those laptops with assistive tech and tools of the trades.

Offline: Fresh Air, DayLight, and Large Muscle Movement

Offline, our learners enjoy fresh air, daylight, large muscle movement, and the freedom to stim and play. Ensure there is quiet space and outdoor space that people can access at any time.

photo of man sitting on a cave

Cavendish Space: Caves, Campfires, and Watering Holes for Dandelions, Tulips, and Orchids

We provide psychologically and sensory safe spaces suited to zone work, intermittent collaboration, and collaborative niche construction.

We Believe: Human-Centered, Trauma-Informed, Self-Determined, Equity Literate, Open Technology

Learning is rooted in purpose finding and community relevance.
Social justice is the cornerstone to educational success.
Dehumanizing practices do not belong in schools.
Learners are respectful toward each other’s innate human worth.

They need to be able to breathe.

AUTISTICSCIENCEPERSON
Every time I get close to the edge
Breathe real slow

Breathe real slow
Down to your belly, to your toes
Breathe real slow

--Breathe Real Slow by Jim Lauderdale

I think the key here is space.

“It’s Not Rocket Science” – NDTi

The Gift: Learning Disabilities Reframed

Now that we’ve explored The Need, The Answer, The Feeling, and The Learning. Let’s celebrate The Gift: our reframed notions of disability, neurodivergence, and difference.

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