One of the best parts of working at the Dekko Foundation is meeting the people we serve. They have lots in common! They love their community. They love kids. And often they’re not quite happy with how things are going for children.
After our travels we share stories…like this one: A few weeks ago Ashlee, one of our program officers, visited the Washington STEM Academy and talked with principal, Tom Ray. Over the past few years, their entire staff has worked tirelessly to change a traditional elementary into a project-based learning school. We didn’t write down Tom’s exact words but, to paraphrase, he said that as experienced educators it’s necessary, but difficult, to step back and learn new things about teaching and how children learn.
Step back and learn new things? We agree! Researchers learn more about brains and how they work every day! New methods are uncovered…best practices are shared! It’s true in teaching. It’s true in grantmaking. It’s true everywhere.
Stepping back and learning new things requires us all to admit that we have a lot to learn… It’s a little slice of humble pie…most people’s least favorite pie flavor! But stepping back pays big dividends!
We think a lot about stepping back…as a matter of fact it’s part of our key message for 2014:
Great things happen when adults step back and consider what children need to grow and develop!!!