I would consider the Energetic Learning Campus a catalyst of change for education but it has not been easy to convince our community. No matter how much I try to explain what we do, it always seems inadequate. Maybe it is my explanation or maybe context/atmosphere of the discussion. I have concluded that you need to experience it. What we are doing at the ELC as educators, providing a “hands on” experience, is what we need to provide for the public. We need to give them the experience of seeing the ELC in action.
Today’s typical classrooms do not reflect the outside world. If you placed a physician of 100 years ago into today’s operating room, she would be lost. However, if you place a teacher of 100 years ago into today’s classroom, he wouldn’t skip a beat. Some of the frustration about change is it seems slow when we compare it to the fast paced change in so many other facets of our society. Consider the many transformational changes that have taken place in the medical world, the technological world, the banking world, the sports world, and there are many more examples. I ask the question, “Why is it that schools are so hard to transform?” I believe that if schools fail, kids lose and therefore society tends to stick to the safe ideas and traditional schooling, knowing the outcomes may not be amazing, but they are predictably mediocre at worst. I realize change is a difficult journey but to take education to the next level it is going to be hard. However, “difficult” or “hard” is no reason not to change.
Change is hard for many adults but from what I have witnessed over the past year and during September start-up, teenagers are much more able to embrace and adapt to change. Have you ever dreamed of going to work in a school where all the educators are positive and love their job? A place where these positive vibes are transferred into the hearts and minds of the students? I have experienced this for the past year and especially this September.
I just finished walking through the ELC during lunchtime and this is what I saw:
- 2 teachers collaborating about “super fit”, a course they will be teaching
- 1 teacher helping mold a mask on a student for the project they are working on
- 1 teacher dancing to the X-box with students
- 1 teacher playing basketball and volleyball with students
- A group of students sitting around our Secretary visiting with her
- 1 teacher helping a student with English
- Students playing table tennis, bubble hockey and foosball
- Some on computers playing games
- Some sitting around talking and listening to music that plays in the hallways
What a great atmosphere – just a few reasons to want to come to school. As I sit here in the hallway writing this blog I can hear the noise of educators teaching and the buzz of the students learning. The feel of this wonderful atmosphere is hard to explain but something you need to experience.
I will leave you with this picture that I came across this morning posted on our wall. It was posted by a student – positive student influence is alive and well at the ELC.
Please come visit us and experience what I cannot explain in words.
Wow – I have the best job!
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