Thursday, February 24, 2011

Show Up for Life

appreciationIn Disconnect to Connect from The Thinking Stick, Jeff Utecht took students on a week long journey and students had to turn in all electronic devices other than a camera. He made his theme for the week: Disconnect to Connect. He shares,

“Each day after working on the project and teaching students we would come together to debrief about the day. I would lead the kids through the debrief session that went something like this.

Thoughts on Today
(Overall comments on the day, something funny a kid said, something you learned.)

A Moment
(I wanted students to reflect on a of those moments we have from time to time where you just step back and go WOW. I wanted kids to think about those moments, when did they come and what did they mean to them.)

A Conversation
(I gave them time to talk about a conversation they had with another student based on my challenge above. Who did they talk to, what did they learn?)

A Take Away
(Each night I would add my own observation of the day and try to send the kids away thinking about something. One night we talked leadership, one night team work and another night about the kids at the school and their lives.)”

What a wonderful way to connect with life! Maybe this is a commercial break from my usual blog posts but this really struck me as important. Not just in the classroom but in real life. How much of life do I let pass me by without taking stock of each day and appreciating it? Wouldn’t this be a good practice to get into on a daily basis? I think at times I do this when we do something special but not when I have ordinary days. Even the ordinary days should count.

I think it is important to show up for life and appreciate each of these things in every day. I want every day to have a Wow moment. I want to take time to have a conversation with others about my Wow moment. I want to learn something every day which is an indication that I didn’t waste the day because for me, not learning something each day is wasteful.

Do you take stock in your day? How do you show up for life each day?

Posted on the Successful Teaching Blog by loonyhiker (successfulteaching at gmail dot com).

Original image: 'Bedruthan Sunset_Z7717L' by: Barry


Lisa I. said...

Wow! Thank you for sharing! I think this is such a great opportunity for all of us to sit back and look at our lives and how it is infiltrated by technology. I used to be a counselor at a summer camp and I always tried to do something similar each night. Reflection is always a good thing. I find that my students struggle with personal reflections. Thanks again for sharing!

loonyhiker said...

@Lisa I think personal reflections make people feel vulnerable and that is why many people struggle with personal reflections. I think it also hard to be honest with ourselves because we know when we aren't! Thanks for reading my blog and leaving a comment!

Carissa Sumpter said...

This was really good, thank you for sharing that. It is really important for the children to stop and take a break from daily stresses of school and life in general to just reflect on something. This idea was a really useful one. We all need a "staycation," sometimes, adults as well as children. It's nice to take a breather and look at something meaningful and inspirational.

loonyhiker said...

@Carissa Sometimes we get so caught up in life that we need to make ourselves look around. It is like looking out the side window of a vehicle and only seeing a blur. Then looking out the front window and seeing beautiful flowers. Thanks for your comment!