My third-grade teacher told my parents that I belong on stage. My parents laughed, concerningly. I thought it was fantastic! Imagine that! Singing, dancing acting! Does life get any better??
Apparently my third-grade teacher wasn’t referring to my exceptional talents. I think I may have just been giving her a run for her money.
Fast forward – I am not on stage earning a huge income playing around! I am, in fact a teacher – and a nurse.
My working life has been eventful – and a times involving a bit of a song and dance.
I am not sure if it is because of the empathy I feel or the audience I want to entertain – but I do enjoy getting in front of a class. I enjoy working with people. I enjoy facilitating change. I enjoy those colourful students – the creative types, those people who are a little different. I like a challenge.
I believe the purpose of education is to support change. I call it enabled. Enabled Education is a collaborative partnership designed for all learners - adult or child, male or female, ASD, ADHD or neuro-typical, in a group setting or one-on-one.
Enabled education supports wellbeing. This philosophy works in all educational sectors– preschool, primary, secondary, VET (Vocational Education and Training) or tertiary.
Enabled education is a collaboration and partnership with the teacher, the learner and the community. It is holistic in nature and empathic in approach.
The educational goal is enablement with empathy. Enablement needs empathy.
The challenge is that empathy is not always easy. AND change is harder. For me, I had to remove the labels and develop an understanding of the learner’s individual narrative – their work, experience with learning, their reasons for learning. People are people and we all have our own stories – we all have those closets used to hide those skeletons.
Change can be painful and a bit frightening – and it needs to be! Change needs to be supported with empathy. A change challenging education program needs an empathic community.
A community may include the learner, colleagues, other students, other teachers, books and specialist. The learning journey is dynamic, continually growing to evolve.
The key aspects of enabled education include:
After these factors have been considered, then we can start planning.
Life is a journey in learning.
Perhaps my third-grade teacher was not too far off the mark. I guess I am still trying to engage people. I am still trying to help people get along and move along. I still believe that as social beings we need to learn and practise empathy.
And I still have a lot to say. If you are interested in working with me, lets catch up for a chat.