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Parenting Praxis


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“Liberation is praxis: the action and reflection of men and women upon their world in order to transform it."--Paulo Freire, Pedagogy of the Opressed, p.79

We became parents.  We became parents without knowing who our children would be or how to parent them.  Here we are now, learning as we go.  Parenting is a process and it's an art.  To often we are not trusting of the process, or ourselves, or one another. We find ourselves seeking help as individuals from experts, solving problems that appear one step ahead of solutions. 

What if parenting problems were social instead of individual? What if we came together as a community canvas? What if parenting was a form of social liberation?What if a solution was learning how to love? Can we learn how to love ourselves, our children, one another, and each other's children in the process of parenting?  What if we came together not to fix problems, but rather to learn to love one another with our problems?

Thich Nhat Hanh talks often about love, and he says that "The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers.” Attention is necessary for loving, because it enables us to learn what the person, animal or thing needs most.  Parenting Praxis is a growing group of parents who want to attend to their children and community of parents with love.  It is an open group that is rooted in radical intimacy, trusting in the process of parenting, and learning to love ourselves and our children together with open vulnerable hearts.

Because this group is dedicated to attention and building intimacy, it is limited to 12 persons.  Whenever possible we encourage parent teams to attend together. We encourage all parents of any aged child up to 21yrs to attend, as we know we continue to learn from various stages of parenting experience. Childcare may be available for children over 3 yrs. and must be reserved in advance.  The group will meet monthly on Friday evening at 6:30pm for five sessions, (2/16, 3/16, 4/20, 5/18, 6/15) **We know most people cannot attend every gathering but we ask that you commit to a minimum of 4 sessions to sign up.

There is no cost to join the group, but we do ask for a suggested donation to the space ranging between $10-$20 per person, per session. This group is peer led valuing shared experience over expertise and is faciltated by artist-moms Rebecca Bray and Dawn Breeze (bio's below).   Register below and direct any questions to director@instarlodge.com

Parenting Praxis
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Bios:

Rebecca Bray, is an experience designer and installation artist, and an educator and trainer. She is the Managing Director of the Center for Artistic Activism (C4AA.org), where she helps artists engage in social practice and activists use more artistry in their work for social change. She was the Chief of Experience Design at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History, where she led the teams responsible for art-science programs, youth internships, teen volunteer programs, school programs, scientist engagement with the public, and interaction design training. Before joining the Smithsonian for 8 years, Rebecca was co-founder and technology director of Submersible Design, a New York City-based interactive design company. Her clients included the American Museum of Natural History, the Whitney Museum of Art, the Intrepid Museum of Air, Sea and Space, and many other nonprofit institutions who sought to create innovative interactive experiences that engaged the public in rich content. She has taught interaction design to students, teachers, scientists and others, including through the Harvard Extension School and at NYU. Rebecca’s work as an artist and interaction designer includes The Meatrix, Botanicalls, and Windowfarms – projects at the intersection of art, science, technology, and the environment, along with Silosphere and Framing Device, experiences that invite audiences to shift perspective, through installation, performance, sound and wearables. Rebecca’s interactive work has been featured on the BBC, NPR, Discovery Channel, Good Morning America and ABC News as well as in the New York Times, ArtNews, and Wired, and at the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney and the Hirshhorn. She holds a masters degree from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts in the Interactive Telecommunications Program.

Dawn Breeze, is a creativity advocate, change agent, educator, writer and interdisciplinary artist, living and working in Germantown, NY.  Breeze has lived and worked in Columbia County for sixteen years and is committed to building community around creativity as demonstrated in her interdisciplinary social projects like: Instar Lodge, the non-for-profit arts project space she founded and currently directs, Wayfinding: Imaging History with (Our)story, a mapping odyssey at at Olana State Historic Site,her curriculum Creativity + Courage™ which she has been leading for six years as participatory workshops throughout New England for non-for profit institutions such as HIghwatch Recovery Center and corporations like Etsy.  Breeze is a lead facilitator and coach for The Good Work Institute Fellowship in the Hudson Valley, where she works with creative entrepreneurs, activists, and artists to develop a more equitable and regenerative place through good work.  Breeze’s work has been featured in New York Times, New York Magazine, Good Morning America, Chronogram,  the Huffington Post and Thrive Journal.  She holds a masters degree from Goddard College in Interdisciplinary Arts.

 
Earlier Event: November 3
#artistmomsunite
Later Event: March 5
MONDAY MENDING