"I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn." Albert Einstein
You know what I enjoy these days we are secluded to our home: The sounds of kids playing with their parents outside our house. For long children didn’t go outside to play. What’s more, they weren’t with their parents. Parents were at work. And when they were home, they had all these chores to do.
Are you one of these parents? Are you also a teacher that needs to deliver online classes? Maybe you are a grandparent, that has so much to give but can only do it from distance. (Sounds like sad poetry: Distance, distance, distance…)
I know this must be very difficult. I just know it’s better to make the best of it. I’m going to focus on tools that are practical. They are based on my journey raising my own kids, which included a lot of home time. As a person that led extracurricular enriching activities, I didn’t believe in taking my daughters to such. I created for them an environment to explore at home. Yet also, to help raise creative thinkers, I studied the ideas of great education leaders and the academic research on recovering the illnesses of education that has been done in the past decades. My goal was to make tools to help people in their everyday life that are research based.
And now the time has come. Change is forced on us. And it is frightening. I hope to help you manage it. I know there is an overflow of tips and advice available online now. It makes you feel sick. It’s also difficult to embrace those tips, because we need to do the work and generate the best practices that are right for each of us.
I want to make this blog applicable and relevant. So, I am simply going to present my tools, and hope they help you find your path through the corona virus crisis incubation tunnel to feeling content with your educational efforts.
What does it mean to make an environment to explore at home? Easier said than done, I know. And for each of us it might mean doing different things. But there are general things to concentrate on. For that check out my Creative Environment Check List. Post it on the refrigerator. Look at it often, to invite ideas on how to implement it. Let them pop up at their own time. You can’t force creativity.
The children need us now to promote their strengths. Otherwise their weaknesses dominate the interaction at home. For that check out The Identifying Gifts and Fulfilling Potential Kit. It’s like a check list, but a thorough one. It’ll run you through discovering the kids’ individual strengths and outlining a plan to foster them. Then it will be clearer for you how to help your children. It’ll help you identify your students’ points of strength. And yours. It’ll help you grow your power as an educator who is there to raise happiness and confidence. If you’re a grandparent, do it for your grand-kids to better understand them. Kind words even from far that touch the right spot at a grand-child’s heart could do wonders.
You may have the best intentions but discover your efforts do not work. Check out The Paradigm Shift Tool. It might be that the educational concept engraved in you from your own childhood is blocking your success to help nowadays kids prepare for the future.
You might need to overcome aggression. As we are confined to our homes, how can we release it? Check out The Releasing Anger Tool. You can also use it to help the kids release aggression. Then there will be room for productive creativity and for care.
To empower yourself, take a moment to fill yourself with energy in order to be there for the kids. Check out The Empowering Tool toward Engaging with Energetic Kids. Heartwarming nature and women paintings will take you on a quick journey to being at your best. Exercise it until by just taking a deep breath and thinking of the paintings, you’ll be right back on your feet.
Check out The Pearl Expressions for Creative Conversations. Post them on the refrigerator, too, so the kids see them. It’ll help keep the ongoing at home positive and pleasant.
You may wonder how to push children into making their own original educational products. How about using a simple coloring pages kit to run them through this challenge? The Product-Based Learning, Reviewing Progress and Creative Problem Solving Tool will help you do that. It can also be used to see how the children are dealing with new learning material - as productive evaluation. Then you can provide advice on how to continue the learning process. And finally, it's a great problem solving tool - for adults, too.
Finally, If you are an education leader take a look at the How to Overcome Challenges in Adopting New Creative Strategies tool. It is a simple table that enables you see all the people and team mates that take part in education innovation. For each it recommends the best practices, research based. So it will give you a holistic view on change to make it work.
I hope all this helps you connect with a love for the challenge of raising creative thinkers.
Let me know if there is anything more I can help with.
Before we part, here's some optimistic poetry:
When a Boy and a Girl Crossed Paths / Michelle Korenfeld (C)
“The pathway is vague. To where does it lead? Will I break a leg? I'm nervous indeed.”
“Just follow the sense of the flower in my hand. Don't let common sense make this journey end.
“One little step, and one little more. Follow the odor; let it fill up your core.
“Without even noticing you've taken a leap. The fruit of your talent ready to reap.
“Just know that the flower is always there, Leading you with care to flourish and share.”