INK2016 Day 1, Session 1: Yellow Brick Road

Speakers: Kenneth Lacovara, Kenta Koga, CJ Meadows

Who is a Dinosaur?

A T-rex? A penguin? A stegosaurus?  How do you decide? Kenneth Lacovara is a paleontologist who has excavated some of the largest dinosaurs, including the infamous Dreadnoughtus in Argentina, which weighs 65 tons and is one of the largest known land animals! When he is not excavating rare fossils, he is working on cutting edge technology using 3D printing and imaging. Kenneth spoke about how the past, the present, and the future make one long line up of events leading to the Big Picture which is constantly changing as everyday goes by. This Big Picture is really big. The events that led to the composition of this big picture we exist in today are so many and so mind-blowing. It is a kaleidoscope of sorts; its propensity both unfathomable and ever-fascinating. It’s quite beautiful to think that we all are a walking museum of natural history, as Kenneth said during his talk today.

Kenta Koga- The real life Dumbledore.

Our childhood is where we spend most of our formative years. Back in school, Kenta’s teacher taught him 6 ways to ask questions-
What? Who? When? Where? Why? How?

Most of us would relate to the story of being inspired by the Harry Potter novels. We have all waited (still waiting) for our letters from Hogwarts. Kenta wanted to create a school of magic where magic goes beyond being just an illusion and becoming human speculation. And that is what Gakko aspires to be.


Gakko (Japanese for school) designs summer camps that focuses on creating a school that is more magical.


People with unique experiences and knowledge to share. They are called Senpai (one who was born before). High school students who have an insatiable hunger to learn. They are called Kohai (one who is born after). There is a symbiotic relationship shared between the teachers and students. Education follows a dialogue and not a unidirectional transfer of information.

When and Where?

Imagine your entire year is filled with summer camps! That is what Kenta’s life at Gakko is. They pick beautiful places for these summer camps. He, one day, aims to create a “Travelling circus of education”.


The Senpai go through an extensive and exploratory process to design their workshops. A human enigma machine, a museum of portraits. and more were created at the summer camps.

It all begins with one question- “If you become a high school teacher for one day in your life what would you teach and how?”

C.J Meadows-“Prof! Where do great ideas come from?”

Great ideas are born from connecting what is on your mind with the outside world. She spoke about how recognizing a problem is where you start. Somewhere between your thinking and your experiences is where you find those great ideas. Define what inspires you. Collect experiences in your mind, create a workshop there. Sense the world in a unique way. Notice one thing in the world around you today and collect them. This unique lens of the world will lead you to actions.

Just start walking. Don’t wait for an auspicious or right moment. Just start walking.

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