Think of all of the people involved in your child’s education.
All of the people who interact with the hopeful and impressionable young minds of children like yours. Children who are seeking knowledge, understanding, and a place in the world. All of the adults who have invested in shaping the future through working closely with children and families. All of the adults who influence, teach, question, enable, support, and model.
Everyone has a role, a job, and a responsibility along the path of your child’s education. The power people have is immense. We can sometimes lose sight of who and how the people in your child’s education play a role and make a difference. The power of people, the real heart of education as a whole, can truly make an educational experience worth it.
The Teacher: Professional. Experienced. They spend copious amounts of time with your child outside of home. They see your child grow, expand their mind, interact with their peers, make choices, and develop their self identity. They can provide a unique out-of-the-home perspective for how your child thinks, sees, acts, and grows. They see your child for who they are away from their parents, away from their siblings, away from their home. Teachers have the power to help shape their social interactions, how to learn from others and make meaning out of mistakes. They can help your child safely make decisions to try new things. They can be a trusted adult who truly wants them to grow up into a respected, responsible, successful and smart individual. Their power is immense and direct. Their words, actions, reactions, and choices directly influence how a child sees themselves, treats themselves, and carries themselves in a room filled with peers. The connection they have with your child can last for years, directly impacting how they think for themselves.
The Family: Innately connected. Home. Continuous love and support. Having a shoulder to cry on. Experiencing and learning life’s toughest lessons. Comfort. Ownership. Nourishment. Relationships with young and old. These values are just some of the foundations to growing, to building a life, to helping a child become a strong, confident and moral individual. Parents and families have the power to create individuals and support them through the trials of growing up. To pass down stories and values. To build tradition, belonging, culture, family and individuality. To play with, explore the world with, and provide experiences that help shape their understanding of the world. Families can provide experiences that nourish their minds and hearts. Experiences that they can build upon, use to make sense of and solve complex problems. Experiences that spark an interest, enrich a conversation, provoke questions. Experiences that can help them connect to others, to stories, and to the world. And experiences that engage them, fill them with wonder, with ideas, with enthusiasm, with gratitude, and with a motivation to try new things. Families have the power to build lifelong learners and create individuals who will make lasting impressions on our future. They have the power to be an advocate, a voice, or a support to help their young child find their own place in the world.
The School Administration: The connection between families and teachers. Professional. Caring. Supportive. Resourceful. School Administration have a unique and impactful power as the voice for everyone involved. They have the power to communicate, share, respond, connect, and enable. They can create pathways for a child’s education. They can directly influence a child’s understanding of the world as it grows bigger. Their words, actions, reactions, supports, and the way in which they respond to others or respond to them directly influences how a child sees themselves within the whole school, the world outside of home. They have the power to connect everyone involved, share information, and create an openness for progress. They have the power to make the connection between home, school and community stronger, directly influencing a child's love for learning and safety within a school. .
The Peers: Where you fit, where you don’t fit. Values that matter to you, values that don’t. Making friends, losing friends, building friends, compromising, sharing, criticizing, listening, talking, independence, loneliness, company of others, helping, role modeling, leadership, empathy - all of these experiences in education that significantly help shape who we grow up to be would be difficult to learn without peers. Learning through hands on, in your face moments that require you to learn about who you are and who you want to be. Emotions, actions, words – the power peers play in a child’s life prepare them to learn more about themselves than any adult could ever instill. The good and bad moments of growing up and learning from peers prepares a child for a life of honesty, strength and resilience. This role, like all others, is powerful and influential. Perhaps even more than we may want to admit.
The Community: Young and old. Rich and Poor. Sick and healthy. Trees, parks, picnics. Buildings, streets, cars. Neighbours and strangers. A community has the power to shape an understanding about how the world works and how your child fits into it. A community has the power to instill value in learning, in sharing, in respecting, and in supporting others. The way in which a community engages with a child’s school, their classes’ initiatives, their shared successes and achievements has an influence on whom a child grows up to be. Recognition in a community has lasting effects, a sense of belonging to something big, a larger connection to preserving, living, and respecting the way in which others live. Respect for individuality, to appreciating diversity, and cherishing the wisdom of other’s experiences. The power a community of people has in a child’s education is far greater than we give credit to. And to that end, we need to remember that we are all part of a child's school community. Each and everyone one of us. We all have a responsibility to uphold.
The power people have in a child’s education is immense and far-reaching. We all have a role. We all have to share the responsibility and step up to the challenge. Whether you are a parent, a teacher, a community member - we are the heart of raising successful, healthy, strong, and independent individuals. Children growing up around us today are in need of our support, our role modelling, our care, and our wisdom. It’s far too easy to lose sight of just how powerful our role is.
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Each post is written by a supportive member of Via Vita Academy, be it a teacher, parent, student, community member, who is invested in the topic of education. Take a read and comment below!