Today, I witnessed something remarkable. There are not many things in life that are true surprises… Expectant parents say that all the time when choosing to wait the long 40 weeks until they find out if they have a girl or a boy. I do feel that way… but occasionally I am surprised and rewarded with people who are remarkable and able to show it.
It is a truly a great sight to behold when people follow their passions and under no circumstances feel satisfied with the completion of their goals. Rather, they choose the road that is less taken, and the one that will be an adventure at every turn.
Our five year old son, repeated the Pre-K class at our school (Strelitz Early Childhood Center), because his birthday happens to be right about at the cut-off, so we made the decision to have him begin Kindergarten next year (and never looked back!). We also made the decision along with the head of our pre-school and his teachers, that it would be in his interest to actually repeat with the same teachers… and (after we screamed with glee!) …we never looked back.
These teachers know how to plug our children in, sync them, and charge their batteries for LIFE! At a time that is just at the turning point where people seem to retain memories, I pray and hope that our little people will remember their Pre-K teachers and what they learned because if they learn nothing else a day in their lives, they will have been taught all they need to know.
We started the night in the “active lab” where one of those awesome smart-board/active-boards took center stage with a compilation slideshow of the years activities. (After four times with this teacher, I knew to expect that at the very least) The lead teacher, always humble, was genuinely excited and READY for the sharing to begin. After a brief overview of what was to come, she explained that the theme of the night was CHIHULY, the artist, and then she gave a little explanation on how they came around to learning about him. She may start with an idea, but then as the school year begins, and the children open up, she insists they develop their love of learning by discussing, inquiring, researching and does everything and anything to guide and engage them in the discovery.
Tonight, we entered their classroom, AKA “The Museum” after each child got to cut their own ribbon blocking the doorway… The lights were off, we were able to tour around the exhibits which were just absolutely spectacular and frankly, I think Dale Chihuly himself would have been blown away.
What may seem like a far cry from traditional sit-at-a-desk-pre-K-education makes me feel like screaming from the rooftops- How much more information could one kid hold… all while racing to the top, to be our future leaders. I am so pleased with the results of today, that I decided to share the excitement here… and while these are iPhone snapshots (oh gosh they are horrible), the immense amount of work that went into this presentation cannot even be described using pictures (good, bad or otherwise) or words… if you could only have seen it first hand.
My only sadness comes from knowing that my children will be hard-pressed to label a more brilliant team of teachers and year of education and lord knows, they have a whole lot of years ahead of them.
Thank you from our WHOLE CLASS and from our WHOLE HEART. Elyssa and Jacquie – thank you for charging our children with creativity, individuality, camaraderie, reading, writing, math, unbreakable souls and all the incredible values that you exemplify in being a friend, a leader and just being remarkable. I wish we could clone you… all children should experience your gift.
ps. I REPEAT!!!! PLEASE FORGIVE THE HORRIBLE iphone photos! I ran out of the house without the real camera, and well, let’s just say we were glad to be there on time.
***Guess who went back into the classroom today with her real camera!! Feel free to check out a slightly better tour of the classroom here: http://sweetpeoplephotography.pass.us/chihuly