Rotary Club of Northfield, Minnesota  |  Thursday, September 10, 2020


The outdoor social event scheduled for Thursday, September 10 is POSTPONED until the 17th, due to the cold weather. We decided it would be too cold to be outside to increase our spacing and it would likely be too uncomfortable inside too. 
Please leave your YES to the event if nothing has changed for you, but please refill it out if you can now come or can't come or your numbers have changed.    Here is that link again. 
Please do add your name to the survey.  


For a mere $20.20 plus $4.80 shipping, a total of $25.00, you will receive an authentic “I Was Robbed” t-shirt and a “Certificate of Non-Participation” which gives you the freedom to not ride your bike if you so choose. If you want to ride, go ahead and ride. We don’t really care. Just stay six feet apart and be safe.

Order your “I Was Robbed” t-shirt by Monday, September 14th. (use code: TOUR20)


Join us for an informal Zoom lunch social. There will be no formal program.
Chris Richardson (9.6), David McKee (9.8).
Tom Neuville (9.5.91), Rachel McIver Morey (9.1.15).

ZOOM in Thursday, September 10, 2020 at 11:45 a.m.
Zoom in here at 11:45 for casual conversation in a break out room before joining the regular meeting at 12:10.


Our Rotary Climate Action Team (RCAT) is dedicated to making climate change a strategic priority and to raising awareness, providing education and encouraging individuals and businesses to act in the interest of our planet.

For additional information about our club’s Rotary Climate Action Team chair, Alan Anderson, at 507-371-4673 or



Speakers Larry Fowler, Terry Friedrichs, and Bill Kelty


Looking for volunteers for taking Cogwheel notes. For more info or the link to sign-up contact Meredith Galdeen at

September 19th at 9 am CRWP River Clean-up - sign up at For more info contact Kevin Struauss at

Jesse James Bike Tour T-shirts available at Larsons Printing. Use the code TOUR20. 

Towny Night at Estensons - September 10th at 5:30pm in lieu of our regular noon meeting.

Thank you to Kopano for his presentation last week. (Dilley)

Braver Angels  - running a new initiative “With Malice Towards None”  - meeting before  and after the election to converse  - looking for organization participation, churches participation and college participation. Contact Bruce Morlan for more information. (Morlan)

Carl Caskey - 65th wedding anniversary of 9/4. Making a donation to JJBT in honor.



Terry Friedrichs and Bill Keilty, Creative and Critical Thinking Skills of Our Students. Hosted by Larry Fowler.
Terry Friedrichs
Bill Keilty

Today’s speakers were introduced by Larry Fowler. The topic is increased funding for education, particularly critical and creative thinking education.

Dr. Bill Kelty from Hamline University presented on a legislative proposal for educational change in k-12 schools. His presentation was titled “A Call for Systemic Change in the Education of Minnesota’s K-12 Student Population: A Comprehensive Solution to a Complex Challenge”. 

The legislation proposes that there is the need for a transformation of education that addresses issues of equity, equality, and economics. There is a need to take the teacher from the keeper of knowledge to being able to teach kids how to think. The legislation also addresses the need to move from the industrial age to the information age, and to stop preparing kids to work in repetitive tasks, but rather to prepare them for the needs of the information age. 

Specifically, the legislation proposes that all districts have a gifted program, but that advanced thinking skills would be taught to all students. Gifted students would be identified by universal screening, which would open up gifted programs to more students of color and disabled students that are often missed by achievement-based screening. Additionally, all districts would be held accountable for growth in critical and creative thinking as measured by a common instrument. These are the skills at the core of inquiry learning and problem-based learning and the result is that all students are prepared for the changing workplace, resulting in higher wages and greater opportunities.

Minnesota suffers from achievement gaps across the state. We see the highest gaps with students of color and those of lower socio-economic means. Evidence suggests that a funded mandate with demonstrated compliance to standards by districts positively impacted the achievement gap.

Terry Friedrichs presented on Gifted and Talented Education in Minnesota. There are some attractive programs available now in many districts, such as AP classes. But there is a lack of creative thinking programs available. Only about 30% of districts provide a gifted program despite the fact that 100% of districts receive funding for this. Funding is going to other areas that are worthy causes (leadership speakers, arts programs, etc), but not to higher level creative and critical thinking programs.

Terry’s research into Minnesota schools looked at the availability of gifted programs and whether particular measures of successful programs are being included in districts. Terry shared some information about the Northfield district and indicated that while Northfield does have some attractive programs, including assistive technology for special education students, Project Able, and gifted pull-out programs. However, gifted programs are only at the elementary level, with middle school and high school programming changing focus to “right answer” programs like AP rather than creative thinking programs. Additionally, there are opportunities to improve in the measures that this study explored.

Larry Fowler presented on his work with students at Rochester Mayo High School and work on developing critical thinking skills for his students. His presentation was titled “Critical Thinking Techniques That Have Worked [in] My Area Classrooms”.

Larry argued that a focus on the following areas can lead to better education: choice, collaboration, differentiated instruction, creative thinking, and fun. He also highlighted the importance of helping students understand that this is their class not the teacher’s and allowing them agency in their learning - “I’m here because I want to learn.” Larry taught two different classes, one with gifted students and one with general population students that focused on the areas he highlighted. He shared an example from his Great Decisions class in which the student chose what they wanted to study based on the foreign policy text used in the class. Students selected an area from the text and then developed a position paper. They received feedback on how they could strengthen their position argument. Following the development of their position papers, the students then voted on topics that they wished to explore throughout the semester. 

Last week's meeting may be view on YouTube, and more information on Innovate Instruction, Ignite Learning! is available here.


September 17 — Steve Werner and Mark Zober, Partners for Peace in Rotary. Hosted by Charlie Cogan. PLUS Sack Picnic with Social Distancing at the Estenson Event Center.

September 24 — Tim McKone, Classification. Hosted by Richard Schulte.

October 1 — Scott Wopata, The State of Our Community and the Impact of COVID_a9 from the Eye's of the CAC. Hosted by Jayne Hager Dee.

October 8 — Beth Kallestad, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion. Hosted by Bruce Morlan.

October 15 — Matt Hillman, School Update.

cogwheel writers needed 

Looking for an easy way to serve the Club? We're looking for volunteers to take notes for the College City Cogwheel this fall. If you've never taken notes for the Cogwheel before, we can provide an outline of what to record and send to Rick Esse after the meeting. Sign-up here! Have questions? Email Meredith Galdeen or Rick Esse.

Vicki's Vision

Vicki Dilley, President

Dear Rotarians,

Wow! The weather has sure been hard to plan around, hasn't it? I do hope you read my email that we decided to postpone the social event until September 17th when we are thinking the weather will surely be a little warmer. This cold weather sure is going to cut into our social distancing abilities. 
Tomorrow we will make it social time on zoom available to all, no agenda, no speaker ... just whoever wants to come on and say, "Hi!" If you want to go to a break out room with certain folks, we can arrange that.  
Your Rotary Board met last night and discussed numerous things right now. One of the not-so-surprising situations sitting right in front of us is the diminished ability to have the larger fundraisers like the Jesse James Bike Tour and the Turkey Trot. That leaves us with decisions on where we can spend and where we can't.   
Meredith is making some important changes and improvements with our website and our storage of club documents and information sharing. Stay tuned, especially if you are on a committee to hear more about this. Check out the additions to the Local Donations page on our website as an example of the ongoing improvements ...
Beth is preparing a survey to send out to all of you, we would hope that everyone answers her survey questions and then join us on the October 8th meeting where we have breakout rooms to discuss where we are at with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in our club.  
The other committees are continuing to meet and do good work. Although we are in a pandemic, we continue to do what Rotarians do best ... serve others.
One of the ideas that was presented to us that we agreed to run with was a drive-in Halloween event, carefully social distancing but giving children an opportunity to dress up (Rotarians too) and receive containers of candy ... stay tuned as we put together the details on that event and we will be asking for your time to serve the community in this way.  
We hope that everyone has bought a collectors item "I Was Robbed!" Jesse James Bike Tour t-shirt this year ... and encouraged others in your social circle to do so also. Go to 
and put in code TOUR20 and then click on the picture of the t-shirt to put your order in. 
Yours in Service, 

Statement of Purpose: Northfield Rotary Club is dedicated to promoting peace and understanding through service and shared experience. We invite people from all corners of the community to join us as we partner with others to support youth, build sustainable infrastructure and preserve our planet.