Tuesday, June 22, 2004

First grade reminiscence

Actually stories like this send chills up my spine, in a bad way. The now graduated kindergartener is not looking forward to 1st grade after having bonded with the kindergarten teacher.

But the message in the first paragraph is priceless.
We teachers do a lot of talking, so we sometimes forget that listening may be an even more important skill - to practice and to teach. I have taught for more than 30 years.
Some of that time was spent mentoring new teachers. One of the first lessons I tried to pass on was the value of listening to students - a listening that goes deeper than just keeping still. Rather, it's a listening that involves full attention, curiosity, respect, and eventually understanding.
Actually, I think this is a pretty universal message applicable to all human relationships: marriages, parents, family relationships. Unfortunately, I don't think these are values cherished in the corporate world. Wouldn't it be nice if all bosses or co-workers had to toe this line in order to get a good review?