WHAT CAN WE DO TO HELP LEARNING HAPPEN?
WHAT CAN WE DO TO HELP LEARNING AND IMPRINTS HAPPEN?
A FEW ACTIONABLE SUGGESTIONS, THAT ACTUALLY WORK
This a continuation of my past article.
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Now, as parents and teachers, what are we going to do to create that imprint, that real learning in the souls of our children?
This is my short but effective list of what to do to get there:
- The first step to creating that imprint is being with them. Spend real time with your children. When I mean real, I mean present and conscious time.
- Love yourself to the point that is scary how much you love yourself (a sentence from Brené Brown that made me laugh). Dedicate specific times to love yourself. Every day, every week, every month… whenever you can make it happen, make sure there is space for a relaxed bath, some time to drink your favorite drink with your favorite book in peace, a walk in the forest…
- Love your children (also your students) genuinely and show it to them openly and often. When you love them and that is clear to them, they learn to love themselves and others as well.
- Be honest with yourself and your feelings and keep ugly sentences at bay. We all have ugly sentences in our heads: this is too much, this is not enough, I am not doing it right, his meltdown is my fault, I am a terrible parent… When teaching, one of the most common monsters is the monster of perfectionism, towards yourself as a parent or as a teacher and as a result towards the children. When these monsters appear, stop them in their tracks. Take a moment (if you can) and shake them off dancing a crazy song, making funny moves, being silly, making a joke. Take a deep breath and start again. It is okay to do it. If you don’t have the time to do it that second, as soon as you finish, just go ahead and dance to that funny, silly song. Because otherwise, it will stay by your side ready to attack again.
- Do not try to control the learning. I know, we have been raised in we live in controlled environments. Your children and you deserve better than that. Release it. Anyways, it is not real.
Okay, so know that I have done it or I am doing it.
How do I know what imprint will that be?
Surprise! There is no way to know it.
And the reason is that the imprint will ALWAYS depend on the child, the life experiences of that child at the learning moment, and what is happening in the child’s life at that time. Not even the parents will be able to know that.
I do not know all those details when I get into a class. I try to keep in touch with the families I work with and I have an idea of where my children, the children I teach, are at. But I cannot know all the details. And I will never know how my teaching is imprinting on them at that exact moment.
I usually have an idea about how much they are learning a bit after. Sometimes happens a few minutes later, and some other times a few weeks later. But never on the spot. On the spot, I can see the technical part of the learning, the pronunciation, for example. Can that child pronounce a word, is he or she having trouble with a certain sound? I can address that, and I do, for sure, every time I notice. But the imprint is a different story.
Think about it. Think about a person from who you learned something that really imprinted in your soul.
In my case, it was my grandparents (dad’s side). My grandmother would sew ALL HER CLOTHES.
They were well established but she simply did not like the clothing available at stores so she decided to make every single piece of her wardrobe for all her life. She also was a teacher. So, she was busy. Still, she found the time to do it.
Was she aware of the imprint she was leaving on me? Not at all. I was not aware of it until I was a grown-up and I started to create my wool puppets. Her imprint was there. My husband’s support was as well, but her imprint was with me all those years waiting for the favorable environment to come up and help me move forward.
Talking about an imprint sounds strong and brings up a great responsibility as the person creating that imprint. But I feel there is nothing more important in life than that.
What is the imprint you are trying to leave on your children?
I would love to hear your ideas about it. Just leave your comments below!
Let’s inspire each other!
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