I may be guilty of romanticizing change once or twice before. It’s hard not to get carried away and paint change with a pretty brush like blooms in the spring or colourful leaves in the fall. Then you hear that age old saying:
The only thing that is constant is change. Heraclitus.
I feel I lived the quote growing up. Change has always been a constant in my life: different countries, different school systems, different apps. It is what my job is all about after all: helping educators make changes in their practice.
Naively I thought I was good with change. Then the tweaks started happening.
Change of schools, parents moving away, step off a board, new team, step on a board, and the list goes on and on.
The changes were not necessarily bad. They were often necessary and healthy but as they started piling up I could feel my roots unearthing. It suddenly became just a bit harder to focus, to keep up with the mad race, to take the risks I was used to. The changes seemed to play with the safety nets I had established, the roots I depended on. Change was great when I could control it or space it out. All the changes at once felt like I lost my footing. I question my choices, actions and how they are received even more.
Maybe it isn’t as much that I’m not good with change but that I needed a more realistic picture of change. Maybe we all need a reminder sometimes that change is a messy process not just the glossy capture once or twice a year. Maybe it’s time to share the messiness and take the time to find that safe steady core.
I will be good with change again once my roots have settled.
I was sitting one Sunday morning listening to a speaker share how we need to Believe Again. How sometimes we get into such a routine that we miss the wonder, mystery and beauty all around us. We are weighed down by the to do list we think is expected of us instead of the passion that should drive us.
I wrote myself a note to blog about it and then never pulled that note back up.
Sometimes you can’t escape a lesson.
Last night I was going through a few new posts of a fav series on Youtube when it popped up again. Listening to this young diver share his reflection, the same idea came up again. Sometimes we can get so caught up in what we need to fix, what went wrong, we lose our reason. We need to believe again.
I think it’s really important to remind ourselves why we do what we do.
So in a season of to do lists, sessions, details, reports, a season of structures, systems and plans I want to make sure I remember the why.
I want to believe again.
I went to see Gifted last night with a friend. I’ll admit it isn’t hard to convince me to see a ‘pull on your heart strings‘ movie with Chris Evans in it. I expected the tears (you could hear the sobbing in unison at one point in the theatre) but not the reflection on education. Maybe that’s silly, it’s a movie about education after all.
In case you haven’t seen it, the movie in a sentence: An uncle is raising his math prodigy niece in a less than ideal but happy environment when grandma, mathematician herself wants to pull her away to study math and solve unsolvable problems.
It’s always hard watching movies about education. There are always a few cringe worthy moments like the teacher mentioning ‘we don’t speak unless spoken to’ to the grade 1 class (YIKES). But as GIFTED flows you realize the story comes back to the purpose of education. It’s the same dilemma we see on TV, in our conversations at dinner tables, with siblings, sometimes around our staff rooms as well. What is the purpose of education? Philosophy is pegged against Mathematics, academics versus the ‘feelings’ part of education.
As I was watching the movie I kept thinking of Logan LaPlante’s TED talk a few years ago.
The beautiful complex, competent, capable bundle of energy math prodigy needed them both in the end to be happy and healthy. Don’t we all?
If I have to choose one though I think I would go for the ‘decent humans‘.
It’s always quite the milestone to make the first marker of a long project like #the100dayproject. As we completed our first week Monday I was reminded why I love the project. Once again I’m learning and being inspired by great individuals sharing their practice openly. Sometimes it is friends like Sharon Drummond and her daily data doodles. Other times the inspiration is from someone new like parade.made and her whimsical daily Kawaiiness prints. I have to admit though that one of the most exciting elements this year is that my dad is joining in.
It was a simple mention. I can’t remember why I tagged my parents in a post about the project but I just mentioned in passing on Facebook they should join. My mom has always been artistic. The calmer pace out in the East Coast is giving her the opportunity to create more (really it is all the snow days). I thought she might appreciate the challenge. My dad is just getting in to photographs and Instagram. I didn’t expect them to follow up (first mistake). And in typical fashion my dad just jumped in. I opened my Instagram account to see my dad’s first post. We then chatted back and forth about hashtags and how it all works: a unique hashtag for his project, the collective hashtag to connect with the community. The hashtags are muddled up most days and the pictures may be of the ordinary but they demonstrate a commitment.
A commitment to a shared experience between us despite the miles, a commitment to try something new, a commitment to continuously learn.
I hope I am willing to jump in so freely the next time I am nudged with a new learning opportunity.
I stumbled on #the100dayproject two years ago on Instagram and it has been this wonderful learning journey each year. So when I saw the announcement on Elle Luna’s page that the project was back I couldn’t contain my excitement. Both years were unique but shared a common theme: grabbing my camera and creating just for me. I create a lot for work but taking a few minutes daily to create for creations sake was reinvigorating; to play, to learn, to explore. The power of community also came to mind. I learned so much by just following the projects of others. Having friends’ take on the project kept me accountable to posting (even if I had to catch up once or twice).
So what is it? In short for the #the100dayproject you choose something to create, something you know makes you happy and then share your creations on a daily basis with #the100daproject hashtag as well as a unique hashtag for your collection so you can connect with others and learn together. Repeat daily 99 times.
Now the hard part: the project starts in 2 days and I’m still deciding what I should do. Help! At first I was wondering if I should do something completely different like sketching or painting, learning a new language or knitting. I think though I have come back to photography. Although I have a long way to go, I can see how the project has helped me improve my photography. So I’ve narrowed it down to 3 ideas:
- 10 x 10: Keeping a similar flow to last year, the 10×10 would let me have a focus. After playing with the slow shutter app today I would know which theme to start with
- Canada 150: With this special celebratory year one idea was to focus on 100 pictures to represent Canada. Probably taking a 10 x 10 theme as well from symbols.
- An Appy Moment: I’ve always loved how accounts like the.book.report share new or favourite books and wanted to do a similar stylized photo and video recap for my apps.
Will you join me? What action will you take for 100 days? No one is too old or too young!
See you online.