Saturday, 21 July 2018

The story of LIGHT...

Over the years I keep coming back to light as a tool for play, a tool for learning, a tool to explore and experiment...

In a way light has become a symbol for learning...
we become enlightened..
We can also use the word illuminate and elucidate in similar ways...

I gave the educators in Palestine candles as a symbol of learning. That I came to them to shed light on new areas of play and learning... to direct the light from new perspectives in order to allow them to see the play and learning in new ways.

This is part of my love for playing with light... it is much deeper than just the play and exploration, the science and the art... it is also the opportunity to view something in a new light.

The short film below is all abut that... seeing the items in a different way... if the light is shone on it from the front or the side or from behind makes it look different... it allows you to notice new details... and by seeing all of them you can put together you see the greater whole...



There are two kinds of light - the glow that 
illumines, and the glare that obscures. 
James Grover Thurber

For me this quote is important for us as educators... that we can overshadow the children's learning by directing too much, through restrictive instruction, by only allowing the light to be shone on certain stories. We have to get to know the learners we are working with to ensure that we understand how much light we need to shine, to provide learning environments that enhance their learning rather than hinder.


Standardised testing, and teaching to get grades, is, for me, more about treating the mind like a vessel to be filled rather than enabling the children to ignite their own learning fires...  Once the fire is lit there is light to learn. We as teachers need to facilitate learning... this is something I have written about many times, is essential to "Original Learning"

At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.  Albert Schweitzer 
We also need to think about our own lights... we need to be refuelled, we need inspiration to ignite our imaginations and our energy. We also need to remind ourselves of those that do give us that spark - from the smallest to the largest spark... and take the time to acknowledge the role they have on your life...
I am grateful to all people that write comments, give feedback to this blog... either here or on my facebook page, instagram or twitter.  These interactions ignite my energy, illuminate new perspective for me to reflect on - in fact without light there are no reflections... they allow me to think more deeply, more carefully and to become a better educator and human.

I want to thank all of you that I have met face to face over the last few years in Canada, USA, UK, Palestine and Iceland - you have all impacted me and enabled me to evolve. I hope in the coming years I get to meet you again, and also get to travel to new places and meet others...

In April 2019 I will be in Athens as a keynote speaker at Play on Early Education - First International Athens Conference - there I will get to, hopefully, ignite the light in others that listen... and I will also be holding a light and shadow play workshop. Right now you can send in papers... maybe you can share your light with others at the conference? Check the website - the link is a few lines above!





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