I remember meeting with a colleague and discussing how the students were active, busy-bodies, consistently moving… being you know, kids. Initially, the colleague and I were chewing on ways to get them in their seats quietly doing bell work ready to learn that day’s objective. As we threw ideas back and forth, she shared how students would debate everything from the restroom on A hall being better than the restroom on D hall because it has hot water to the pencil sharpener in Mrs. S’s class chewed up your pencil more than the sharpener in Mr. J’s class. As I sat there, I glanced at a quote on her wall. It read:
“Wisdom comes with the ability to be still. Just look and just listen. No more is needed. Being still, looking, and listening activates the non-conceptual intelligence within you. Let stillness direct your words and actions.” – ECKHART TOLLE
As she completed her thought, I pointed towards her quote and asked her about it. Her eyes lit up as that “Aha” moment developed. I knew in that moment her plan was going to be #LIT! She asked if I could return later as she needed to “do some things.d” It turned out she took that quote to heart! She observed how the students learned, how they worked best and how they enjoyed debating. She discovered which students were shy, were talkative and which ones worked best in group vs. individual activities. She planned and worked that plan using her classroom quote as the catalyst.
The next time I visited her classroom, the entire class had a different culture. Students were still active, but they had purpose with their actions. They were discussing and testing theories, conveying their evidence using tablet cameras, engaged and excited to have freedom to move around the room without penalty!
All it took was for the teacher to pause and see the potential inside of her classroom.
Picture Selected from the Amazing Bill Keane and www.Familycircus.comd