Isn’t part of the art of living “to be old when you’re young and to be young when you’re old”, as the saying goes? To be “forever young”, and “wise beyond our years”?
It may be that we humans, for all our seasoned expertise, are but toddlers in the universe…beginners all. Our biology may be ancient, but our development as homo sapiens sapiens is just learning to toddle around.
So, what happens when we overpower young lives with what we think we know?
Remember what it was like to be fed all the prepackaged, predigested stuff in school?
I remember, and in sixth grade decided, ‘That was it! I’m done with school. I don’t know how I can possibly survive another whole six years of this.’ So, I left the school. I just started walking home. I was free!
But by some miraculous means, my mother found me walking home. She said she got a phone call. I thought I was in big trouble. I explained to her that school was not for me anymore, that it’s killing me. She took me home and let me miss the rest of the school day, which turned out to be the full tenure of my retirement from school.
Our oldest son, when transferred from a bright arts integrated school to a conventional classroom, when we moved states, literally told us, “This teacher is draining the learning out of me. It’s worse than watching TV!”
That particular apple did not fall far…
Young brains, souls, hearts and minds are vibrant and fertile gardens. They will grow the seeds planted in them…automatically, based on everything they experience. We should think of these fertile gardens as sacred ground.
Can we, as parents, teachers and mentors, be ‘GREEN’ in our explorations and ushering of the young into the realms of true learning? The big person authority is a powerful imprint upon a young life. It’s ok to say, “I don’t know, let’s find out!”, rather than having to know the answers.
So, rather than facing children with lessons, turn around and face the same direction together. It can reconnect you with a younger you; help you see what they see; feel what they feel.
It’s an attitude that will keep you forever young.
Go ahead, sidestep adulthood. Find the courage, humility and gumption to create new learning pathways in yourself, to connect to your own love and zest for learning, and ‘teach’ from inside that. It’s contagious.