Teachable Moments

I have been reading Innovator’s Mindset by George Couros and I have had lofty thoughts of writing these amazing blog posts about what I have been learning.  I have notes everywhere in the book, on stickies, in my iPhone notes and even in a google doc.  I have about three ideas started but not finished and at least three more mulling around inside my thoughts.   This is how my brain works…always thinking of ideas and the next thing I can be doing, yet struggling to tie up loose ends of where I’ve been.  But instead of posting one of those deep thinking posts, I want to share this conversation with my daughter: 

Last night on the way home from a grueling Crossfit class, my 6th grader said, “Mom, wouldn’t it be great if my gym teachers could see what I just did in class?” (She did 434 reps for WOD 15.2 – scaled to 20# Overhead squats and Ring Rows) “I can’t do their tests very good, but I can do great at Crossfit.  Bent arm hang doesn’t show much.  I’m better than one attempt at a bent arm hang.”

My thought process while trying to think of what to say: Wow.  From the mouths of babes.  This is where we are selling our children short in K-12.  Our assessments don’t show much.  They don’t show our children as whole beings with passion and purpose or as learning, growing, progressing students.  And yet they, at least my daughter, feels that the assessment is the only thing seen and/or that the number defines them.

I struggle to know what to say to her as an educator and parent.  But I told her what I’ve told her in other conversations like this, “School is school, what we do outside of school is life. Crossfit teaches you things that will affect your life beyond the box. It builds you up as an athlete and as a person. You can work on your weaknesses and celebrate your strengths. Don’t let the bent arm hang test get you down or define you. What you did tonight in 15.2 was amazing!”

All of our children are worth being seen.  How are you doing with seeing the children you work with everyday?

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