Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Don't Wait for the Elephants!

Too often we wait for elephants to come rushing into our classrooms, those huge moments where we can find direction for new work with the children. And as we wait, we tend to miss the tiny ants, those opportunities that are nothing short of extraordinary.

As teachers we have to make a shift in the way we listen and see. I mean really see what sits before us.
We must be present in the ordinary moments of our days with the children and they will show us the way!

Late in September, this particular experience was given a voice because the teacher watched and listened as her students walked across the forest path that had welcomed the first leaves of autumn. For the most part it still looked and felt much like a summer day as only a handful of colored leaves were nestled on the branches.

"I only see green leaves. How can it be autumn if the trees are still green?" wondered Bianca.
Her teacher invited her to look closer at the top of the trees. Did she see any colorful leaves.
Bianca did in fact see a few.
"What do you think the trees will look like if we wait a few more weeks?" asked her teacher.
"I think we will see orange, yellow, red and some green leaves. Then it will be real autumn!"
Bianca was invited to draw a representation of her theory.
Several weeks later they returned to the forest to see if her theory was correct. Much to Bianca's delight her prediction was true.

1 comment:

  1. That theory-pastel drawing is amazingly beautiful! That single painting could truly lead to a wonderful exploration of ideas! Thank you for sharing!