Quiet Coyote: and other things I learned from 5th and 6th graders

This summer I had the most amazing opportunity to teach amazing, talented, energetic, and insightful 5th and 6th graders at the Y. On the last day of camp, I gave each of my ladies and gentlemen an index card and asked them to give me one piece of advice for my new job.  After a weekend that wasn’t quite long enough on a Sunday that went by too quickly I pulled out these index cards and looked at the advice that these sweet young adults had given me. Their simple wisdom was exactly what I needed to get me through another Monday and is something that I want to share.

20151018_202956Be nice

Be cool

Be yourself and stay you!

Be strong, Be brave, Be happy what ever goes
your way.

Never forget your sense of humor (you will need it)

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Something Borrowed

Let me start by saying that I was one of those kids who LOVED school. Always. From the time I was in pre-school. I loved learning. I loved the tasks. I loved the teachers. I think there was even a part of me that loved the tests…. I know, weird. I definitely didn’t love exams in college, but in elementary school and middle school I liked the validation. I was learning. I did know these things. I was getting “smarter”

But I was good at school. I seemed to inherently understand the rules of the game and the way it was meant to be played. It came easily to me, and I know that more than indicating that I’m smart, it just indicates that I was lucky. I was able to thrive in an environment of semi-arbitrary structure with semi-arbitrary rules.

What in hindsight seems silly to me, is that the number one cardinal sin of formal schooling is plagiarism. In school, getting caught borrowing ideas or phrasing from someone else is the kiss of death. Its an unforgivable offense. And its silly. Continue reading