In October 2019, I attended New America’s Neighborhood Stories: Looking Into the Past to Map the Future: A Humanities + Tech Approach. Attending this session, inspired me to add a new layer to the “Where in the world is Qai Qai?” map for Zoey labeled Zoey’s Zone. Zoey’s first pin is New York City, for a Meet & get your photo with Lupita Nyong’o for Sulwe at the Barnes & Noble in Union Square. The intent of the map is to guide conversations between children and adults about places and peoples through storytelling that prompts inclusion and early math. (

Then in February 2020, I was a panelist for the New America held a capstone event “Taking a Humanities+Tech Approach: Creating Inclusive Tools and Learning Experiences: Event” to conclude the series of connected conversations (#ConnectedConversations). We were all encouraged to submit a moment to The Humanities Moments project was created by the National Humanities Center in partnership with the Federation of State Humanities Councils in an effort to gather, store, and share personal accounts of how the humanities illuminate our lives. (

I decided on a song because music is a mood changer. I love music, and dance and some say I think in lyrics. Missy Elliott has always been a visionary and the video for “Throw It Back” has the dancers playing double dutch. This fit right with a playground initiative I was jump-starting for community building and STEM: “Playground Playdates: The rhythm and data of double Dutch” – (

– Shimira Williams (Integration Specialist)