We have reached a critical point in the future of education, yes. We know this. We know that overarching legislation does not work. We know that mandates do not work. These students are different and have different needs just as this world is different and requires different things to achieve success. However, I want to take this a step further today. I want to posit to you that we have reached a critical point in the future of educators. Yes, teachers, instructional coaches, aides, cafeteria workers, custodians, office administrators…winter has come (yes, I’m a huge Game of Thrones fan).
In all of our striving to produce learning experiences in students. In all of our planning and professional developments. In all of our data dives and monitoring of the active machinations of the education process, we have lost something within ourselves that we desperately need to get back in order to truly craft learning. And so with that said, I offer a question to you:
“Where are you, dreamers?”
I’m not talking to the students. I’m talking to you, teacher. You, administrator. You, coach, You, aide. Where are your dreams? Where is your play? Has your imagination gone into an endless slumber, kept there by all of the “have-to’s” and “must do's” of the school year? Are you so busy nurturing the dreams of your students and family that you have forgotten your own? When is the last time that you sat down and thought about who you used to be before life took a stranglehold on you?
In my opinion, creativity is the linchpin of learning in both students and teachers. We want them to exhibit it, yet we sometimes forget to model it. We pay lip service to the need for destroying the box, not just thinking outside of the box, but we shoot past it in a constant search for higher test scores and better data to measure our students. And don’t get me wrong, the achievement is necessary, yet at the risk of removing our own creative processes? Well, I think there is a better way. And it starts with you, yes YOU, dreaming again.
Dream BIG. Dream extravagantly! Dream ridiculously. Not just about your students, but about yourself. Not just within teaching or education, but outside of it as well. I tell you that when you begin to dream again, your classrooms, your schools, and your LIFE will take on a new tone and color. The pace of your mental processes will increase. The quality of your lessons will explode, and your enjoyment in everything will grow!
Take it from me, a former Black Knight of the Round Table, the first 8-year-old to explore the vast reaches of the galaxies, and the only baseball player to hit 100 consecutive home runs in the World Series…
this critical point will not be solved through traditional means. So I call you, dreamers,
THIS IS YOUR TIME!
Justin Belt is a teacher, active dreamer, and host of “The WHYCast” podcast.