I’ve often felt like I was skating on thin ice these past weeks. So many things are new. Uncharted territory. In environments where I normally would feel sovereign and experienced, I feel like a novice. Now the term has come to a close, my students have completed their final assignments, and the chapter is closing on a university year that has been like no other. What have we learned?
First: I do not and cannot know everything. I can only do my wholehearted best. I have done that.
Second: Even in unknowing, learning can happen. It’s maybe not the learning I expected or wanted, but sometimes the learning we wanted and the learning we needed are two different things.
Third: Learning can come from unexpected places and experiences. Everything and everyone has the potential to teach us. If we are humble and willing, much is possible.
My students have shown me through this term that, despite my (perceived?) insecure wobbling on thin ice, if I am open to listening to them and allowing them to take the lead–that is, to know when to STOP TEACHING–miracles can happen. Their resilience, resourcefulness and creativity has shone through at every turn. As long as I don’t fall through due to inattention or sheer recklessness, it’s ok if I falter a little when the ice seems thin. Plus: a little thin ice looks pretty when you stand back and look at it from a distance–as this photograph will attest.