In a recent staff meeting we shared inspirational moments of our first week of the school. Our newest teacher talked about teaching her students the “I believe in you face.” She explained to her students that when classmates are trying something challenging like standing up in front of the class, we can radiate the intention of kindness and support by giving them the “I believe in you face.” The students practiced their supportive faces earnestly during the lesson.
The next day the teacher gave them an opportunity to use this new skill. She has been learning to play the harmonica and while playing Happy Birthday for a student, one of the notes was clearly a mistake. Without prompting, many of her students gave her the “I believe in you” face and added their own encouragement with comments such as, “you can do it”, “you are doing great”, “almost there”.
When asked by a parent later in the week about what experiential learning looks like at LWS, the above story came to mind. Children learn values, positive behavior, life skills, through modeling and experiencing. What use would the “I believe in you” face be if it weren’t put to use? What use is cooperation if children don’t get a chance to try it? How about kindness? Compassion?
The Education for Life philosophy encourages students to use these skills of living whenever the opportunity arises. Teachers prepare curriculum that supports their student’s inner growth as well as their academic growth. Sometimes the experiences are planned, but mostly they aren’t, just as in life.