Author Archives: Hannah Blacksin

Leadership (hannah)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

In this class, students will foster and practice leadership skills through planning, preparing, and facilitating school events, as well as team-building activities and outreach to the community. 

Each week, students will work on, and hold each other accountable to, different ongoing projects. Students will work in small teams to execute specific tasks and larger projects for the community and work together to communicate across teams. 

Leadership skills you can expect to develop in this class include time management, giving and receiving feedback, verbal communication, work ethic, task prioritization, taking risks, goal-setting, and building confidence.

Recess! (hannah)

We love recess! In this structured and lightly-competitive play/exercise time, we will walk up the street to use the community gym and play a variety of group games. 

Games will include basketball, soccer, four square, spike ball, capture the flag, various forms of tag, badminton, the infamous mushroom ball, and whatever else y’all want! 

This is a class for anyone who wants to play, run, sweat, laugh, learn new games, collaborate, communicate, foster leadership and team building skills, and/or just add some movement to their week. 

Indigenous Poetry (hannah)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

In this class, students will explore and examine indigenous poetry from across the country working with the anthology When The Light of the World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through: A Norton Anthology of Native Nations Poetry. The poetry in this book elevates voices and illuminates unseen histories across time and space. 

Students will compare and contrast poetry from different regions of the country while learning the stories of poets, tribal nations, and historical contexts to better interpret meaning. This class will include the memorization and recitation of a chosen poem as well as regular discussion, analytical writing prompts, and creating your own poetry and/or artistic expression inspired by what we read.

Philosophy (hannah)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

Philosophy means “love of wisdom” in Greek, but this field has come a long way since ancient times. Philosophy is “the rational, abstract, and methodical consideration of reality as a whole or of fundamental dimensions of human existence and experience” (Britannica). People have always asked big questions across cultures, civilizations, time, and space. In this class, students will decolonize philosophy by not only studying diverse thinkers and perspectives, but by applying philosophical ideas to their own lived experiences and identities. 

This class will require you to gather, analyze, and communicate insights creatively and critically; cultivate skills in close reading, critical thinking, and persuasive writing; and analysis of diverse philosophical perspectives, concepts, and ideas.  

Discussion and deliberation happen frequently – participation is required for your success as a student. This class also includes opportunities to reflect on personal values; address prompts through written work and small group projects; and apply ideas in action. Topics this term include social and political philosophy; ethics and morals; and the origins of the universe.

Chess Club (hannah)

Chess originated in India 1500 years ago, and people having been playing it since then because it is SO FUN. 

This class is for all skill levels – beginners to experts. Folks will be paired according to skill level to learn, practice, and challenge their chess skills. Pairings will rotate with the goal that everyone eventually plays each other. The class will include intermittent lessons about skills and strategies, as well as some guest players throughout the term.

Mycology (hannah)

When we think of fungi, we probably think of mushrooms. But mushrooms are only fruiting bodies, analogous to apples on a tree. Most fungi live out of sight, yet make up a massively diverse kingdom of organisms that support and sustain nearly all living systems. The more we learn about fungi, the less makes sense without them. — Merlin Sheldrake 

This class is about fungi, and what fungi can teach us about ourselves and our role in the world. This is a science class AND a literature class! Throughout the term, we will read the stellar book Entangled Life by Merlin Sheldrake to frame our study of fungi. This book addresses themes of ecology, neurology, human and non-human communication, and our conceptions of intelligence and individuality. You will be expected to read 40ish pages a week and come to class prepared to critically engage in discussion. 

In the science portion of this class, we will learn about the classification, identification, and ecological function of mushrooms in the Pacific Northwest and set up a FERMENTATION STATION to experiment with fermentation processes, learn about yeasts, and hopefully result in some tasty yummies.

Soccer and Kick It (hannah)

Team Spain celebrates after winning the Women’s World Cup soccer final against England at Stadium Australia in Sydney, Australia, Sunday, Aug. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Play fun, chill, games of soccer with a dash of competitive spirit. All ages and skill levels are welcome. This class happens once a week on Wednesday mornings. We will head up to Yesler Terrace together, do some warm ups and stretching, and play soccer! 

Danny Woo Community Garden (hannah)

Danny Woo Community Garden is a community-run urban garden and the largest green space in the C-ID. The garden creates a space for neighborhood connection, access to healthy food, and engaging directly with nature.

In this class, we will volunteer in the garden, doing tasks according to the season, including weeding, planting flowers, tending to the chickens, sorting compost, and helping with the infrastructure of the garden. This class is an awesome way to connect to the natural world and our wider C-ID community, and it’s really fun. 

This class will count toward your community service hours for the year!

B.A.R.S. (hannah and brandon)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

Born at a basement party in the Bronx, hip hop has come to influence and inspire music across genres and styles. Despite its many mutations, it remains grounded in a culture that includes specific language, lingo, references, rhythm, beats, legacy, heritage, style, swag, etc. There’s a lot to learn, explore, and have a boogie to. 

BARS: Hannah and Brandon unite to facilitate a class on hip hop lyric analysis. This class will be structured by weekly student song selection, close listening practice, and analysis of the lyrics or BARS, as said in the world of hip hop. 

This class is a practice in text analysis that will also include big learning about history, culture, evolution of language, and current events. You don’t need to be a hip hop head (like Hannah) to enjoy and learn from this class. 

Look Both Ways (hannah)

Note: This class is open to middle school students only.

This story was going to begin like all the best stories. With a school bus falling from the sky. But no one saw it happen. They were all too busy—

Talking about boogers.

Stealing pocket change.


Wiping out.

Braving up.

Executing complicated handshakes.

Planning an escape.

Making jokes.

Lotioning up.

Finding comfort.

But mostly, too busy walking home.

Jason Reynolds conjures ten tales (one per block) about what happens after the dismissal bell rings, and brilliantly weaves them into one wickedly funny, piercingly poignant look at the detours we face on the walk home, and in life.

Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks by Jason Reynolds is a set of 10 interconnected short stories set in the context of kids walking home from school. It doesn’t follow a conventional structure with a beginning, middle, and end. Each story can stand alone; together they add up to a bigger picture. In this class, we will read the book throughout the term, about 20 pages per week. We will engage in regular discussion, close-reading practice, writing lessons and prompts, and our own story-writing inspired by the style of the book.