This morning I have the privilege of volunteering for Field Day at edu-son’s elementary school. There is nothing quite like watching a group of kindergarteners through fourth graders run obstacle courses, do three-legged races, roll tires, and crab walk down the field.
I didn’t realize how hard volunteering would be, as I just wanted to watch my son compete (he ran the anchor leg of the sack race, by the way, and did just a stellar job).
But Eduflack was really taken by the collaboration that was happening on that field this morning Teachers, administrators, and parents all working together. All focused exclusively on the kids and their experience.
Even with all of the fighting and the concerns and the vitriol thrown around as part of the education reform efforts in Connecticut these past few months, all stakeholders were able to come together, work together, enjoy each other, and make a difference.
Yes, it was just one day. Yes, it was just field day. But for a few hours this morning, I saw what was possible. How we can set aside differences to focus on the most important part of this whole equation — the students.
Now we just need to figure out how to do it without a wet field.
One thought on “True Collaboration on the Field”
How do we get parents, teachers, and administrators to work together cooperatively in order to better serve the students? We can start by asking the students what they want, and then giving it to them. Of course the answer is not that simple, but it could start that way. The joy you felt seeing your son run his heart out for glory at the end of the day is the same way I feel every time a child opens up a book willingly, or asks me how something works and then actually listens to my answer. Do you see what I mean, we are missing the joy. Children have this beautiful way about them that enables them to see the joy in everything, and immediately as they come into this world, that joy starts to get taken away slowly but surely until they are 40 and look back at “the good old days”. Well, what made them good? There was no politics, no bartering for subsidizes, and certainly no unreasonable accountability. Everyone took responsibility for their own, and sometimes for others they loved enough. That is not to say that we should go back to the days where all children learned at home and everyone farmed and lived without new technologies, but give it a second to sink in. If you could have an ideal education for every child, what would it be free of? What would it contain? Not unlike your son’s field day and my daughter’s playdates, education should be a good time. For ALL players. Hard work + collaboration + equal chances = a novel idea nowadays. the answer is so easy and right in front of our faces. Ask your children what they want and inevitably the first response will be NO HOMEWORK, or in my case, NO MATH! However, baseball would be no fun without the thrill of the effort put into that home run and the sound of the crack of the bat. Education would be no fun without the hard work it takes to learn something, and the silence of the wheels turning in our heads. Remember, we are all lifelong learners here. Adults, such as teachers, educators and politicians could stand to learn a few things from the children they serve.