I still remember the night my daughter and I were lying in bed catching up on some quality Daddy-Daughter time when suddenly she sprung up and leaped out of bed to go downstairs. Unfortunately, instead of doing so gracefully, she fell and bumped her head quite hard.
While I’m quite certain that bumps and bruises are common occurrences in many households, it was her remark afterwards that stood out to me.
Once I asked if her if she okay, and held her tight she said to me, “I was glad you were here when it happened.”
Just the comfort it provided her to know that someone who loves her was there in her moment of need was enough to soften the blow. It touched me very deeply and it also made me wish I would never have to leave her side.
And then, as I often do, I tried to think of how this precious moment connects to education and children’s everyday school experiences. We ask children and adults to take risks and put them themselves out on the limb each and every day. There are new curriculums being taught, new technology being unveiled and students are being asked to do more at younger ages than ever before.
For our children and our staff are we providing the comfort level needed to allow risk taking to feel okay and to feel safe. Or, have we become the Mistake Police. Creating an environment in which there is more focus on the mistake than the achievement.
It is our job to create an environment in which students and staff can take risks. This will not happen if they are constantly worried about failing. More than anything we want our students and staff to feel comfortable.
Imagine if you have created an atmosphere of collaboration and caring such that those that you care about and nurture want you there during their time of need because it helps them feel safer!
To me that would be the ultimate!
No longer would there be the gotcha.
No longer would there be the nervousness associated with making mistakes. Instead it would be a feeling of “we are in this together.”
And regardless of the outcome.
Win, loss or draw.
Their response would be
“I’m glad you were here when it happened.”
*If you've got a few minutes and would like to hear some of the mistakes that guests on "My Bad" have shared, just click the link below. I think you'll not only learn from their mistakes but it will also allow to feel a little bit better about making your own.