In following the #educon hashtag today during @MikeKaechele 's session called #standardizethat, I listened in to many conversations around "What if kids designed their own curriculum?". One of the people on who's group conversation I was eavesdropping said, "I can learn anything I want to, if there is something I REALLY want to learn how to do or learn about, I have the tools, that's what kid's need, the tools to learn how to learn, THAT is what we should standardize, learning how to learn."
This made me think, what I have learned that I just flat out wanted to learn how to do?
About 10 years ago I really wanted a fisherman's sweater, you know the yummy, wool, cable filled ones? They are expensive!
So, I figured I would teach myself how to knit one for myself. I got my hands on some needles, bought some yarn and began googling. Tons of tutorials later, I could knit. I can knit scarves, hats, purses (felting your knitting is super fun), and YES, I made a sweater like the one above. (not until I was knitting awhile, turns out knitting cables & shaping sweaters takes some skills!).
During the process I made a boatload of mistakes, I dropped stitches, made really ugly things, things that didn't fit, used the wrong yarn, mis-read patterns, and guess what? I LEARNED from every single mistake!
So, yes, I really wanted to learn something, so I did.
Even when it was hard,
even when I was frustrated,
even when I made a lot of mistakes.
I really wanted to do it. So I did.
Our youngest son loves to skateboard. When he wants to learn a new trick he is RELENTLESS, no matter how many falls, injuries, or hours it takes, he will conquer it.He REALLY wants to learn it.
When my little sister wanted tile in her bathroom and didn't have the extra cash to pay for it she watched online videos, read articles and did it. Her bathroom floor is gorgeous. She REALLY wanted to learn it.
Do you know what students REALLY want to learn? Is there time & space in your classroom for them to explore? Practice? Fail? Try again?
What about you? Tell me something you learned not because someone said you had to learn it, but because you REALLY wanted to!