so, I’m coming to the end of the San Francisco posts and this one isn’t devoted …necessarily, to the usual. It’s an ‘I love learning post’. I have a friend in Denver who loves learning -passionately. And really, we all should. Once you stop learning you may as well throw in the towel because in essence, your life is over. Learning and exploring and extending your boundaries make the difference between life and life well lived. We stayed a day after the conference ended just to do a little extra sight seeing and some reconnaissance for the Discovery Center and that included roughly a four mile walk and a trip to the Exploratorium. We started out fairly early in the morning and made it down to the waterfront by the time Boccalone opened so Z could get a meat cone I had the most incredible steamed bun with a splash of chile sauce. We hung a left and walked up to the giant public art that is a bow and arrow and then turned ourselves around and began to make our way up the Embarcadero. Our first long stop, the Exploratorium, where we went to both research and have fun. It is billed as a learning laboratory, an eye-opening, always-changing, playful place to explore and tinker with exhibits, tools, programs, and experiences that ignite curiosity, encourage exploration, and lead to profound learning. Now to be clear, I lifted that text from their website but it is exactly what it says it is. A place to explore and learn by doing, seeing, trying, failing and embedding. I’ve been researching and considering ways people learn for the last six months or so and let me tell you something-the pathway to learning isn’t found through someone talking at you until you pull out your phone and browse the internet. It is found through digging in and finding answers to your questions. Questions that lead to other questions which lead to exploration, embedding and engagement in those things in your mind and heart as you take it all in. The fact that you do it yourself is part of the key. As we made our way through the exhibits with very likely 2000 of our closest friends we were able to try things, to be amazed and to get excited about things that might not always be exciting. It reinforced for me that we don’t need to spoonfeed people. If you give people tools they will often build something amazing.