Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The Freedom To Search For Answers

There are no teachable moments.

But there is a hole in the sandpit rowboat, something to notice, to stick a finger in, then two fingers. There is a hole to drop a pebble through, then when it subsequently bounces off my toe, I can bend down and look up through the hole from the bottom. I can drop other things into the hole, like wood chips, leaves, and a fistful of sand, all of which fall through to the ground like the pebble did.

There are no teachable moments, but there is this boat and I am standing outside of it. Teacher Tom is sitting inside of it and I can try to get into it too. It's not a simple thing since the side of the boat is as high as my waist and I'm trying to do it without releasing my grip on the thing I assembled down at the workbench. I can throw my leg over and dangle it down, reaching, stretching because the bottom of the boat is beneath the level of the sand outside and I'm going to have to drag my leg across the metal.

There are no teachable moments, but I have this feeling along the inside of my thigh to investigate, bending down to look at the part of my body that scraped over the edge of the boat where there was a hole. There's nothing to see, but I can still feel it. I stamp my feet on the bottom of the boat a couple times, then remember that I'm inside the boat with Teacher Tom and smile at him, a genuine, courteous greeting, unlike those phony "Good mornings" that adults try to teach us to say.

There are no teachable moments, but there is this boat and I'm standing inside of it. I got in. I'm going to get out and there it is again, the lifting of the leg, this time higher than before, not releasing my grip on the thing I made, pulling myself back into the sand, first on my knees, then back up on my feet.

There are no teachable moments, but I can smile at Teacher Tom again, Goodbye, before noticing a bigger boy in a high place doing impressive things. I can watch him up there doing his big boy stuff, making his big boy noises, taking his big boy risks. I can stand here and study and aspire. I will try to get up there for the next several days, my feet, time and again, slipping from beneath me, causing me to fall on my belly. Some day I'll get up there too.

There are no teachable moments, only learn-able ones, and they are all that, because I have questions and the freedom to search for answers.

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1 comment:

Billy said...

"There are no teachable moment".. Today in the bath (not in our house so not with the toys she is used to) daughter tried putting a piece of foam (part of a road) round the corner of the bath. It didn't stay because of the bend. She tried a few times and I was going to use it as a teachable moment and explain how blah blah blah. I stopped myself. As you said, there are no teachable moments, if and when she comes to that knowledge, I want it to be hers, I want her to own it [Piaget said something like that that I liked..]

Luckily I didn't use it as a teaching moment because in the end she somehow managed to get the piece to stay (not bended) LOL.

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