Celebration: Learning and Unlearning #celebratelu 5/9/15

celebrate link up

It has been a long time since I celebrated.

I connected so strongly with what Tara wrote last week in her post returning to celebration after a time away. Blogging had been feeling like a chore to me. Weekends had been especially hard, and I knew something had to give. It seemed like an easy choice to take celebration off the table for a few weeks, especially since I struggle as a writer to find ways to make these celebration posts feel interesting and necessary. And it did help me to remove this one expectation and cut myself some slack. I haven’t really missed writing these posts, even though I believe strongly in gritty celebration. But I have missed the community–very much. And so, to borrow Tara’s metaphor, I’m diving back in again and keeping Ruth’s very wise truths about celebration in mind.

It’s the final week of the semester (cause to celebrate in itself!) and I’ve spent the week reading my students’ reflective essays and blog posts about what they’ve learned and unlearned this semester. These are always my favorite assignments of the semester. I marvel at all of the different paths learning takes. What I try to create in my courses is a structure and a foundation to support and encourage many different learning journeys. In nearly twenty years of teaching, one of my best unlearnings is that I need to get out of the way. Teaching should be an invitation, not a demand, to learn. There is usually resistance at the beginning of the semester (“Just tell us what you want!”) and some students flounder with so much freedom, but most end up taking to it and loving the experience of being in charge of themselves as learners. The stories of their learning journeys are always full of surprises and discoveries for me as well.

And so this week, I celebrate my students’ embrace of learning and unlearning, their willingness to dive in, muck about, make messes, play, explore, know and not know. I’ve learned as much or more from them as they have from me, and that’s just the way it should be.

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11 thoughts on “Celebration: Learning and Unlearning #celebratelu 5/9/15

  1. I love your links this week. As a professor – part time – I too have read lots and lots of reflections and comments this week – Lindsey – and my student who said, “You professors should all talk to each other,” will keep me moving in a positive direction!

  2. Love the combination of learning, unlearning, invitation and getting out of the way. I am glad that the student writings provide surprises and discoveries.

  3. Pingback: It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #imwayr 5/11/15 | the dirigible plum

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