This week, Lethbridge County students are heading back to the hallowed halls of learning — back to the grind. Students, of all ages and grades, will be dusting off the backpacks and packing their lunches to spend a day learning about the world. The world has certainly changed, that’s for sure.
Technology has both liberated us and transported us back to the dark ages, as students learn how to use technology to make it in today’s evolving (some would say de-evolving) society. Traditional ways of learning are still respected by educators but society has been shown a way an individual learns is unique and a cookie cutter approach to teaching is as extinct as the dodo bird.
One thing that should be brought back though is a longer lunch break for students. Students are rushed throughout their school day already. Taking time to eat and mix and mingle with other kids is a good way to teach socialization and taking time to enjoy life, rather than scarf down a lunchbox in 20 minutes. And, less homework. A local radio personality noted in the “real world,” employees (for the most part) are not expected to bring home work after a day at the office. Except, because of technology and our obsessive compulsive disorders to work, work, work — more employees are expected to work from home or do this or that for their workplace. Thanks Interweb.
Society spends too much time worrying about getting things done. Most of today’s tasks can wait until tomorrow. And, learning doesn’t have to fit snugly into a tiny little volatile capsule. It needs to breathe and be free to experience what life has to offer. It is true, life is too short. Take time to smell the roses and learn accordingly.
Educators also need to be allowed to take the time to enjoy why they chose to teach in the first place. Schools are a place for students and teachers to learn from each other. A reciprocal relationship that should be nurtured by all parties. Many school boards are changing with the times and exploring the endless possibilities out there for children to learn. A tip of the hat goes out to those school boards. There are some school boards that are stuck in time, stagnant like a festering pool of non-change and conformity — to those school boards — for shame.
To learn is to achieve greatness. The future leaders of tomorrow are indeed in our midst. These future leaders don’t need to be bombarded with old and archaic ways of thinking. These future leaders need a chance to be open to all life has to offer in ways of learning and living their life, not their parents’ or grandparents’ life.
So often, students are kept back from living because of a parent’s or grandparent’s misunderstanding, ignorance or just plain old prejudice about something. We, as a society, need to make sure our students have an opportunity to explore, experience and be (whatever it is they want to be).
Tolerance, flexibility, compassion, inclusion — these are words adults use to describe what it is we all need a little more of. So, why not truly teach these actions to students without an adult’s biased or jaded perspective.
Students are sponges — they soak up what is around them. This school year, adults need to realize this and act accordingly. Students need a head start in today’s world without the weight of their parents or grandparents holding them down or back from greatness.