When my sons are engaged in something they love and I try to end it, they say, “Just 5 more minutes please!”
One of my favorite moments in a classroom occurs when no one hears the bell because all are engrossed in what they are learning and doing.
I cannot tell you how many people recently are asking me, “So, are you counting the days until school ends?” Without any intent of obnoxiousness, I tend to answer, “Actually, Camp Sea Gull taught me not to count the days, but to make the days count.” As excited as I am for my next career chapter, I am loving what I am doing. I may not even hear the bell that signals summer vacation for the non-administrative types. I hope I am making the days count! What if we lived in such a way that we spread this model – to make the days count? What if we looked forward to the NOW, and taught students to do the same?
What would class and school look like…if at the “end” they begged for “Just 5 more minutes please!”
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One of the things that I love about the group of 7th grade girls who are participating in all of our “extra” language activities (language conversation tables, cartooning workshop, Schoology site, Mango online software, etc.) is that they are CHOOSING to do all of these activities on their own time. They don’t have any time constraints. There are no grades. They don’t get any recognition for participating. There is no need for “classroom management.” Many of them are not even “my students” (as part of a traditional class). They are not counting the days until they can stop participating in these activities. In fact, I am confident that they will continue many of these activities throughout the summer, next year, and beyond. This has been a very rewarding experience for them as well as for me this year. Shouldn’t everyone have this kind of experience at school (and outside school)?
YES! Kristen, your “facilitation of possibility” for these students is profound and inspirational. By helping these interested, self-initiating learners to build the systems that they WANT to build to learn, you are helping them make a language arcade much like Caine’s Arcade, and you are helping them make the days count. Brava!