I am recycling my #OneWord choice for this year. The word I am choosing, “Moment”, was also my #OneWord a few years ago. But this year, I chose it for a different meaning than before. Two years ago “moment” to me was all about appreciating the interactions with everyone I came in contact with. I believe that I have done and continue to do a fairly good job with appreciating each moment and understanding how quickly time goes. Valuing time has become a big part of my philosophy of life. This year I choose “Moment” because of two reasons.
The first reason is that I believe that we need to understand that moments in education are more imporant than the final outcome. What I mean by that is that we need to stop focusing on the end result and instead put our energy in the small chunks of time that we are with our students and with each other. The end results will come, but only if we are allowed the freedom to focus on what we know is important as teachers and administrators. We need to be allowed the freedom to implement innovative strategies and practices that we know will encourage our students to become lifelong learners. We are failing our schools with the continued emphasis on test scores and school letter grades as the ultimate outcome of education. This reduces the opportunities for our teachers to make a difference each day and with each moment with our studnents.
I also chose “Moment” because of the quote that I attached to the top of this blog post. I discovered this quote yesterday by musician and freedom fighter, Michael Franti. He was speaking about his journey to understanding his own physiology and health. This quote speaks directly to the importance of appreciating the moments, the millimeters along the journey rather than the miles at the end of the journey. This is so true for those of us looking to transform what “school” is and what it can be. We need to move away from the outcome of learning as being the grades on a report card or the scores on a cumulative assessment. Rather, education should focus on the process of learning, those moments and millimeters that take place along the path to true understanding.
There is a definite movement happening in education as there are so many connected educators who are working almost underground as we learn and share best practicies that are seeking to redefine what the educational experience should be. I am examining new nuances of my #OneWord by placing “moment” within the word “movement” to signifiy the importance of appreciating these moments, these millimeters along the path to the educational movement that I hope to help amplify this year and beyond. Our profession needs those of us with a voice to speak out at every opprotunity to help change the minds of those who believe that “school” should still be like it was when we were kids. This year I plan on taking my actions to another level. I am tired of only reaching those that have already changed their minds. I need to find those opportunities to reach those that hold a different viewpoint and engage in meaningful dialogue that will hopefully change minds and ensure that all students are receiving the best education possible. Thank you to those of you who are already on this journey. If you are not, we need your voice and your passion for doing whatever is possible to help tranform “school” into what it should be for kids. Join the “MO(ve)MENT”!