Our History


A.K.R.N.A is the result of an evolving educational learning awareness that grew from a humble neighborhood five year research teaching-leaning project named As Buds Blossom (ABB).  This small school, spearheaded by Sharon Quinn, was conceived & spurred into fruition by parents and slated to open in Youngstown, OH.  Yet, due to an intense economic downturn, ABB found its eventual home in Oklahoma City, OK.

As Buds Blossom was composed of student’s whose parent’s desired more from education for their children and were open to innovative teaching ideas that made sense. 

These parents were a driving force for this school and were from diverse cultures.  They had a determined eye focused on recognizing noticeable growth abilities of their children that fit their parental objectives.  Actually, their expectations were exceeded and this made for enduring commitments, and lots of happiness. 

When Tina Samuel, a native of Sri Lanka, joined As Buds Blossom, she brought her years of teaching experience and cultural insights to our work.  Years later, she continued to wield her influence as an A.K.R.N.A co-founder.

 

Thumbnail of As Buds Blossom Project & What We Learned

  >The class model had a social range of children from 2 years to 8 years of age.
This range proved to encourage rapid learning progress as well as a rich platform for developing relationship skills and character development.

  >The children’s learning abilities varied from artistic preferences over academia and vice versa. 

  >The classroom environment simultaneously supported the attendance of a severely learning disabled child, to the enhancement of everyone involved. 

  >We worked with a student- teacher ratio of 7:1 and found with a teaching assistant we could handle a ratio of 12:1 easily.

Since determining the impact of having the Affective Domain as primary with the Cognitive Domain as secondary in a classroom structure was central to our research, we were keen all things concerning relationship dynamics, and determining the influence it wielded over learning itself. 

Thus, our relationship gauge was deemed to be predicated on “how many could we hold in our heart”, that is we could all (parents + teachers+ students) know each other well.

An unexpected discovery came when we held each student’s learning growth to the learning outcome metrics published by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction of Oklahoma State Department of Education known as PASS – Priority Academic Student Skills.  

The children were excelling in their abilities between 1-2 years beyond what the State deemed were the standard learning outcomes a school was expected to achieve for their students, except for our learning disabled child.  Yet, even this child’s learning was advancing beyond what the medical authorities thought was possible!

Parental involvement was a key factor that evolved into a natural collaborative relationship in which parents, teachers, and students experienced ongoing win-win scenarios.  The children taught us how to tap into their inner qualities.

It became clear, what we were learning was

  • What education at its best looks like,
  • What it took to make such education happen,
  • What empowered non-harming discipline looks like, and how it works in eliciting self-controlled behaviors, improved thinking discernment, & choice accountability,
  • How students actually loved learning and were highly self-motivated when it was done right, and
  • How doing education right ESSENTIALLY meant
    • teaching from rapport because it escalated learning outcomes,
    • teaching with a “bag of best known pedagogy tools” that could be freely engaged to maximize each student’s learning benefits, and
    • pacing learning from guiding insights observable empirical feedback delivers.
Our reputation led to participation in the Growing Up Strong program collaborated by Oklahoma University and OK State Department of Mental Health, as well as an invitation to assist a local organization in setting up their pre-school program and pre-teen discussion group.

 

Synopsis and Insight Influencing
A.K.R.N.A’s Paradigm Perspectives Today

All we advocate and value is seeded in the empirical evidence gathered from the As Buds Blossom project’s success. As a result we NOW know how to do it right and get consistent results: Those students are amazing adults today.

Thus, the clarity we bring to the educational reform movement is an ability to identify and elucidate key factors involved in progressing the dynamics of an educational paradigm shift essential to thrive in 21st century.

1.    One is of A Structural and Functional understanding resonant with insights shared by the visionary, Bucky Fuller.
2.    A firm recognition in the need for change being advanced from Principle, not policy.
3.    A flexible and varied pedagogy able to educate the whole child whilst evoking innate potential.
4.    Identifying causal factors of failed education.

Vicky Rebeck Beckman 28182 60x60 Our History
Vicki Beckman mother of 9
I know Sharon Quinn to be a gifted and creative educator of children.  She creates a learning atmosphere and guides young people to seek learning and growth. Three of my children benefited from Sharon’s keen skill and I was privileged to be mentored in some of her methods.

 

As Buds Blossom Scapbook1 Our History


Related Articles:
Birth of Educational Revolution by Evolution
Eye Opening Experience Urges Founding of A.K.R.N.A  (a journal note from an A.K.R.N.A founder)
Meet the Co-Founders
Our Collective Future is Education Dependent

 

>Research Material/Resources:
Bucky Fuller – Paradigm Shifts: The Vision of Buckminster by Celeste Adams

“Fuller believed that school limits the mind and suppresses original thinking. He said, “What usually happens in the educational process is that the faculties are dulled, overloaded, stuffed, and paralyzed, so that by the time most people are mature they have lost many of their innate capacities.”