Awesome Owen Teaches Me
Tonight I treated my nephew Owen to ice cream, his 1st grade report card and his informational book about baseball were the reasons to celebrate. Tonight he shared his science fair project with us, of course it was amazing. I am resisting sharing photos right now because he will be bringing it into school and I cannot reveal it prematurely. But trust me it was awesome!
Owen is the youngest cousin in the family and I am his godmother and so I always get to brag and gush over Owen. My brother Rick and his wife Eileen told us early on the pediatrician diagnosed him with PBS (perfect baby syndrome). As you can imagine Owen receives (and deserves) much attention from all of us. He is an awesome 1st grader!
Owen taught me something really important about myself when he was about three. I told you he has PBS so it is highly likely he would be educating his aunt who is an educator.
One night, after we had dinner together at my house I heard Owen’s footsteps coming down the hallway. My husband and I were in the living room talking with Eileen and Rick, we looked up as Owen ran into the room. His eyes were lit up and he had the most excited 3 year old grin on his face. He was holding something in his hands.
“Look what I did!” Owen announced proudly.
“Let me see,” I replied. He walked over and showed me this “thing” that he broke into to two.
“Look, two!” He shouted raising his hands up higher than his head.
I cannot remember what this thing was, but I know it was mine and I know he actually broke it. I only remember that because I remember Rick and Eileen apologizing (briefly because you know their son has PBS). I can’t remember what it was and I did not even care that he broke whatever object this was that belonged to me. What he showed me that day was that the one thing I truly am passionate about, the one thing that makes my heart sing and that is learning. I can watch learning happen, I can be learning, I can be talking or sharing about learning, I can be guiding the process of learning, but in all ways this is what brings me complete and total joy.
Owen in this one small action and reaction made me realize what made my heart sing and what I was truly passionate about—learning.
Fortunately, I am in education and every day I am lucky to watch learning happen. I watch students and adults learning around me everyday. Even more, I get to learn everyday and reflect on that learning as I stretch myself a bit further than the day before. Learning, all parts of the process, all the messy parts then the glory when the learning is realized and then the messy part again as we reflect and learn more. Always learning.
This passion I am so grateful for because not only it is present in education where I work, but it is present in my everyday life. It is woven throughout my existence no matter where I am or what I am doing there is always opportunity to experience learning in some way.
This story about Owen leads me to reflection of this week. I was involved in so many learning experiences professionally that I could not conceptualize a way to share all I learned in one post. I think Owen’s story leads me to the place where I can allow myself to reflect on each of the experiences individually, rather than all at once. Giving each experience the space and reflection it deserves. This blog post is the beginning of a series on learning experiences from this week that should finish off my Slice of Life Challenge and then lead to a more weekly commitment of blogging.
- Professional Development with Maggie Beattie Roberts from Teachers College Reading and Writing Project.
- Comsewogue School District Google Leadership Symposium
- Peter Johnston Conference
- Long Island Connected Educators’ Summit
In a way of a challenge to myself I will continue to work on posts to reflect on the above professional development experiences I participated in this past week.
Thank you Owen for teaching me and showing me what makes my heart sing. I also have to thank my brother who reads my daily posts and gives me feedback each day. Tonight he gave me some feedback about the last two days and suggested that because I was writing everyday that maybe my writing was not at the same level because I was valuing quantity over quality in my writing. I explained that it was not really about that, it was more about making the commitment to just write and make time for it in my life each day. Creating time for it everyday is how I developed the “habit” and while he may like some posts better than others it still developing me as a writer. I am learning, in the mess of it and working out the rough edges taking risks and trying some more. I do know that no matter what I wrote here it is awesome because Owen taught me about my passion. Perhaps I am also ensuring positive feedback from my brother since this entire post is about his son, Owen teaching me. Crafty, yes? Either way, I learn lessons in literacy and lessons in life and always they are woven together.