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Thursday, February 28, 2019

The Want To Learn

This is somewhat a two perspective reflection.
I am maybe my hardest critic. This quote always resonates in my head. “one rises to their level of incompetence.”
Does that mean one can only obtain so much? Picture a student with the same thought. It goes against everything we try to say and encourage in them, “chase your dream”, “you have the potential”, “you have the ability”. At times I feel as though I have reached my plateau and then someone says “you are doing a good job.” or “Have you considered taking on this?” Most of us strive to do more, reach higher, expand our horizons. As trustees we are charged with student achievement and Well Being within the guise of preserving, advocating for and advancing public education. At times you may feel that you have gotten in over your head or think whoa that person knows their stuff and your self esteem and confidence sinks. Imagine how a student feels when they ‘get it’ versus when they ‘don’t get it’. Why is that person so knowledgeable or how did that person become so informed? Was it just work related knowledge, experience, research or PD? Or is it personal desire to grow to make that plateau higher and higher? How often have you heard  “there is no stupid question?” and then get laughed at for asking that question. How does that make you feel? How do you think it would make a student feel asking that question that everyone pretends to know the answer to? Worth is not measured by intelligence. It is your desire to improve, grow, learn that are key elements of success. Many students have not developed a desire/passion to learn or that passion that drives themself to learn or have lost it or had it destroyed. We are beginning to realize that more often than not that passion for discovery is extinguished by school. Which theory do you want to pick? As adults most of us have realized the benefits of lifelong learning. We must put in place the conditions that encourage our students to be the same. It may only be tiny steps but one has to begin somewhere. It goes beyond extrinsic or intrinsic motivation or applying cognitive principles or metacognition. Who knows what the ripple effect may be.
From our Board Plan: “At AMDSB, our goal is to foster successful graduates. We define successful graduates as students who leave AMDSB prepared for their next steps and understand themselves as learners and advocates for their own needs, are literate and are numerate. They are also prepared for a changing world and are confident and curious thinkers, resilient and flexible thinkers who demonstrate global competencies (communication, critical thinking,  creativity, collaboration and problem solving) and positive and principled engagement in society.”
Engage Inspire Innovate… Always Learning: needs to be more than just words for us as trustees and administration and for our students.

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