I want to close for the week with something our colleague John Willette wrote the other day. It was his culminating thoughts on an extended PD series we did in my district this year on the science of learning. (The seven-minute intro to that series is here, in case you're curious.) John's a sixth grade educator in my district, and he's been invested in this work for a long time.
As I think forward to 21-22, I'm excited to think and plan for making certain that I'm overt and apparent in connecting all aspects of our school day to our mission of learning, knowing, and growing. Taken together, all of these “science of learning” discussions and considerations have brought into full relief the need to be extroverted and demonstrative about a foundational love of learning. I want the children to know that out of all the things I could have done on any given day I chose to get into my car, drive to school, and spend my day with them.
I do this because…
- I love learning — it's a great source of energy and joy and satisfaction.
- I love knowing — it's trite, but knowledge is power.
- If they already think the same way, I'm here for them as an experienced guide and fellow traveler.
- If they don't feel the same way yet…I'm still here for them every day to show them in every way I possibly can that learning/knowing/growing are highest order values in and of themselves, without respect to grades, colleges, jobs, etc.
- If they don't already know it, I'm here to show them that we come to school to learn.
- I'm here to live as an example that learning matters and can feed our most essential selves.
I want you to imagine what it would be like to go into the summer planning only this for the fall: that we'll embody values like this, that we'll bring forth our work from such good.
Anyone else have goosebumps?
Because that's what we're in for.
Bonus: Here's a quick video essay on John's thoughts and the week: