Heads Up

Welcome to Heads Up, a blogging experiment that aims to: 

  • connect the people, parts, and principles of Durham Academy;
  • share ideas about learning and human development;
  • spotlight a few of the many wondrous things I get to see every day at Durham Academy. 

Thanks for reading the posts below — and sending news, links and ideas worth sharing. 

Michael Ulku-SteinerHead of School 


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Guilt, snow, and lifelong book learning

As were many of our students, part of me was relieved about yesterday's snow day, as I hadn't done my homework.

Last night, Lee Hark was scheduled to lead DA's first-ever Alumni Book Club meeting at the home of alumna/trustee Jamie Spatola '00.

Jamie (a voracious learner who has written two books with her father and now writes for Mental Floss - click here to see a fun example) dreamed up the Book Club as a way to stir good conversations among our local alumni.

I keenly looked forward to the event but - amidst a busy few weeks at school - had failed to read the book.

Tension (along with trash-talking from Lee and Jamie) mounted as Wednesday neared. Should I lamely bail out? Should I read a few reviews online and fake it at the Book Club? Should I do as Alumni Board President Garret Putman did and listen to the High Fidelity audiobook at high speed (read by British chipmunks?!) Should I declare my laziness openly and attend as a literary freeloader?

As luck would have it, snow and ice cancelled the Book Club meeting, solved my problem, eased my guilt and gave me a few more weeks to read High Fidelity.

As readers of his blog know, Lee selected Hornsby's memoir only after overcoming his own fugue of self-doubt and literary idealism.

I now have the book on my kindle and can't wait to read it - in part because I lack and crave Lee's encyclopedic knowledge of '80s rock bands, and in part because I can't wait to see some of my former students, gathering in Jamie's living room, doing exactly what they, as teenagers, never dreamed they'd be doing: talking about great books with aged teachers.

Posted by in Alumni on Thursday January, 30, 2014


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