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northstar_logoNorth Star: Self-Directed Learning for Teens
is a community-based learning center in Hadley, MA. Instead of going to school, our members direct their educations to fully explore their interests and passions, just like Matt and Logan are doing. We think Matt and Logan are awesome!

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The Virtual Learning Academy Charter School is New Hampshire’s first statewide on-line virtual public school. The Academy’s goal is to use the latest internet technologies to provide students with any time, any where access to a rigorous, personalized education that helps them learn today, graduate tomorrow and prepare for the future. The Virtual Learning Academy provides free classes to New Hampshire residents and accepts out-of-state students on a tuition basis. The school serves both part-time and full-time students. Please visit our website and check out our course catalog today. Mr. Winkler and Logan: We are very impressed by the journey you have undertaken and we are happy that we can provide support to you through our online courses. What a wonderful opportunity to learn through experience! I’m sure that this will be an adventure that you both will remember for the rest of your lives. Good luck!

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The official shoe


The official deck The official eyewear




The following individuals, groups and organizations are not our “sponsors,” but we want to help promote them, anyway.   

A frequently asked question is “Where do you stay?  Hotels?  Or do you have an RV?”  As of this writing (1/6/10) our total lodging expenses are $22 for a state park campsite near Gettysburg, PA.  In short,  has not only made this trip financially feasible, it has added huge and unexpected educational value in the form of new friends, local insight, and fresh perspectives.  Please, join this international fraternity/sorority of altruistic, cool people and be part of crafting “a world where everyone can explore and create meaningful connections with the people and places they encounter.”  

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What do you learn in school?  Math, science, business, industrial arts, and so on.  Guess what?  That’s everything you need to create a skateboard!  Click on this link to bring the create a skate curriculum in a box to your school!  BONUS: you walk away with a skateboard deck that you designed and made yourself.

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In this fantastic integration of skateboarding and education, Dr. Skateboard explains “concepts in physical science that integrate action sports, including skateboarding and Bicycle Motocross (BMX) … athletes perform high flying maneuvers that demonstrate physical science concepts, such as the relationships between velocity and acceleration.” 

The Shut-Down Learner: Helping Your Academically Discouraged Child by Richard Selznick, PhD. compares ‘spatial’ intelligence (applies to Legos, puzzles, gears, wires, etc.) with language-based skills (reading, writing, etc.). He writes, “It is devastating in school to have the combination of high spatial skills and weak language abilities.” because “School is heavily loaded on the verbal skills side of the continuum. There is a clashing of brain styles between the curriculum of school and the high spatial skills of the SDL (Shut-Down Learner).” He offers valuable suggestions for preventing or reversing the scholastic “shut down” of kids who fit this profile, and lots of encouraging real-life stories from his many years of experience in this field. (He doesn’t mention cross country trips, but it’s working pretty well.)  I wish I’d read this book a year ago.

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Kawelina – If you plan to visit Hawaii, click here first!  This organization turns tourism on its ear.  Instead of staying in a hotel on the beach, you can participate in real life in an authentic Hawaiian community. 



Many thanks to all the friends, new and old, who have supported us on our trip:  

Tim, John, Seth and Kai  

Sandra and Joe  

John, Laura, Charlotte and Elizabeth  

Jim, Jacqueline, George  

Jen, Darla, Dixie  

Janine, Batman, JRR Tolkien  

Garden Sk8 Indoor Skatepark– a great skatepark that hooked us up with some equipment!  Thanks, Bossman!  

Jen, Anthony, Little Anthony, Mackenzie, Payton  

Eric, Rachel, Alana, Jared  

All the truckers who honk when Logan pumps his fist in the international hand gesture for “honk your big air horn!”  

Ace, Peg, Abigail  

Matt and Katherine  

Jason at Charm City skatepark  

The Pennsylvania State Parks  

Laura and Betsy in Pittsburgh  

Tom and Melanie in Cleveland  

Everyone involved in the public library system  

George at Modern Skate and Surf  

Anna in Detroit  

Paul and his family in Indiana  

uncle Karl  

Kara, Hal, Euro, and Roxy  

Nadine, Mike, P.D. and Mr. Pi  

Matt and Pam, Kipper and Mao  

Jeff, Renee, Molly, and Bandit  

Nate in Lincoln  

Kevin and Miles  

Babette and Bobo  

The Kansas City Library – Plaza Branch

4 Comments leave one →
  1. September 28, 2009 12:06 pm

    this company hasn’t been put up yet but in a month or so it will be i saw you at charm city yesterday and you were pretty good and we are Fail Skateboards soo ya bye!

  2. November 2, 2009 8:20 pm

    First of all, way to go! This is one of the coolest ideas I have ever heard and I am SURE that in some ways you will learn more this year than your other years of school combined!

  3. Emily W. Jones permalink
    November 5, 2009 9:50 pm

    Hi Logan,
    What a great opportunity for you and your Dad to experience the U.S. on a skateboard. Congratulations on a creative year. The article in the Concord Monitor today is excellent. Good luck on your adventure. If you want to talk to Rotary when you return, please call me


  1. NorthStar « 50skatekid's Blog

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