Sarah’s Diary Episode Twenty-Seven

Jenny wanted to use the class today to ask students for a new assessment of the sibling innovator potential. She also had some updates from Sarah’s diary she wanted to share.

Throughout the class, they discussed innovation, creativity, and curiosity. Rather than ranking the siblings, she wanted the class to assess those three traits using the table below:





She asked them to place an X in each column where they saw a trait. “A sibling could have an X in one column, two, three, or none. Before I give you the results of your rankings, I’ll be telling you more about what each sibling did in their life to see how accurate your assessments are. But before I do that, I want to read a few more entries from Sarah’s diary.”

September 2, 1889   “My plot of corn did better, but Luke won again. I know what I need to do to improve next year.”

September 15, 1889  “I started high school today. How can I follow Mary and Elizabeth? They have set a hard example to follow.”

October 3, 1889  “The seed library is done. Next year Jimmy Harper will be in charge. Our teacher was right to get other kids involved.”

October 15, 1889  “I got a letter from Elizabeth. Morgantown must be a big city. I can’t believe there are so many students there. But she seems sad. Her classmates are making fun of her voice. They say she has something they call a twang.”

October 29, 1889  “I’m really worried about Elizabeth. She says that everyone seems so cynical. She really misses us. It made me realize how supportive our family is to each other.”

Jenny asked what her class got from these diary entries. “Are creative people too sensitive to their environment? Do they need to fit in, or can they thrive by understanding their place no matter what others think of them?”

The class realized that there were two different dimensions to the family that were revealed in these diary entries. Elizabeth and Sarah seemed to be sensitive to how others viewed them. Their well-being was influenced by how others saw them. Luke, on the other hand, seemed to be more comfortable in his own skin. Harriett was interesting in that she was an idea person who started the concept of the seed library but realized that she needed the support of others to make it a reality. She was both bold and imaginative but also realistic about what she alone could accomplish. She viewed the support of others as a necessity, not as a matter of personal well-being.

Jenny then asked, “What does this tell us about the mindset of creative people? Share your thoughts with me for homework.”

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“Highly sensitive people are too often perceived as weaklings or damaged goods. To feel intensely is not a symptom of weakness, it is the trademark of the truly alive and compassionate. It is not the empath who is broken, it is society that has become dysfunctional and emotionally disabled. There is no shame in expressing your authentic feelings. Those who are at times described as being a ‘hot mess’ or having ‘too many issues’ are the very fabric of what keeps the dream alive for a more caring, humane world. Never be ashamed to let your tears shine a light in this world.”– Anthon St. Maarten (Author)

How To Use

Useful guides for incorporating messages into discussion.