Are you a parent? Or a teacher? You might answer no to both and that’s quite alright. But for sure you were a kid once. And no matter how long ago that was, you most likely agree that each child has his or her special talent and ideally they should be encouraged to pursue that special talent and become really good at it while also feeling increasingly empowered in the process and self-confident about achieving even more along the way?
Sounds nice, doesn’t it? just the right words crafted into a nice scenario. Yet are we actually doing that? Sure the school system is opening up to new ideas and concepts, and there are countless parenting books telling us how and what to do to help our kids. Have you experienced that as a child? My parents were very encouraging of my passions since I was a child, yet somehow I could not fit them into the mold presented to me by the school system – left them at the door when I entered school I guess – and then I simply put them aside for a while because I pursued other things along the way. Came back to them years later.
Schools are opening up to the world, yet I think there is still a long way to go until we can send our kids to school and not skip a beat when thinking about their education. Is the school going to provide them with what they need to grow into accomplished, self-confident adults who will make the world a better place simply because they love what they do, they are good at it and that makes them happy people? Hard to say. I don’t like generalizing so I will tread carefully here. There are some great schools out there and there are so many amazing teachers too. Yet the reality is that we should not leave it up to them. Recognizing our children’s special talents early on – and by this I do not mean looking for a prodigy or pushing your child to become one just because he played with your aunt’s piano at a family get-together. I am talking about spending time with your child, knowing your child, knowing what interests him and what he is good at, and help him pursue that and get better at it. Helping children flourish should come as naturally as feeding them and putting them to bed. It should not be luxury treatment but everyday occurrence.
Ideally, the same should happen in schools. Being a teacher is not an easy job, and like I said, there are many amazing teachers out there. As parents we should help them by offering our help, by being our children’s advocates and by supporting the teachers who are going above and beyond trying to support our children’s dreams and passions. It’s everybody’s job to make the world a better place. And what an honourable job that is.
I was shown a brilliant video today during a teacher training program. Take a look and marvel.
Are you a bee? There is still time to become one…