Sunday, April 7, 2013

Spring Break Learning

So, I learned a few things over spring break:

  • Ken Robinson asked me, in his book, to look at the question differently. NOT "How intelligent are you?" but "How are you intelligent?" Just by switching a few words around, we give every person value.  There is no standardized scale on intelligence. The first question is the wrong one to be asking.
  • I need my friends.  I was able to get away with some good friends and talk through some important things in my life. And they just listened.  We had plenty of fun, too.  Lots of laughs.  Laughter is strong medicine.
  • ...But I need my wife and children more.  Simply put, I'm most myself when I'm with them.  I'm barrier free.  I thank them for that.
  • Twitter is a powerful educational resource. I got in on some great educational chats and connected with some strong folks.  It has changed my classroom and will continue to do so.  I also learned that I MUCH prefer fellow Tweeters who share about their classrooms and experiences than people who simply post links to other articles and blogs and all that. (I know that I post links to this blog--please don't judge too harshly.)
  • My colleagues inspire me. Over the break, I connected with three colleagues (one elementary school teacher, one middle school teacher, one high school teacher) and we decided to set up a district book club.  The book club is up to fifteen already--and that was during spring break. Spring Lake Public Schools is loaded with dedicated staff.  If anyone reads this and wants to jump in, join #SLelement on Twitter.
  • Finally, this...
    • I need to continue to follow my passions. Henry David Thoreau once said, "...that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours."
    • I've lived by this in the past. I've road-tripped across the country at age eighteen when others said it was silly, I've quit grad school to follow my passion of teaching when others said it wasn't smart, I've adopted an Ethiopian child when people wondered if it was the right time. Every single one of these decisions has made my life better. It might be time to make another unexpected decision to follow the path of my dreams.
In all, I've learned a lot this spring break and the future is bright--very bright!