Learning to learn comes from the dedication of a great teacher. Like a bunch of kids, my 5 year old Lucas started kindergarten last week. We attended a “back to school” event last night to meet other parents, the staff and, most importantly, Luke’s teacher. Georgina Blackett teaches the Spanish Immersion program at Luke’s public school. His big brother, Zack, attends private school at Town but Luke is a month too young to attend and we thought that this would be a great learning experience for Luke and the entire family.
In a very short period of time it’s easy to see that there are lots of things to like about Ms. Blackett. It’s easy to be impressed by her Stanford and Oxford education and the fact that she worked for “Teach for America” but the things that really impress me are her passion, caring personality and personalized communication; there’s a lot there. This background and her passion culminate in her stated (and written) goals to teach kids how to learn and to be accountable for their learning. She described her goals and her methods of tracking these goals very clearly. She laid out programs to make it fun for the kids to track their own progress and to self assess. These kids just turned 5 and they are learning accountability, goal setting and risk taking from their teacher.
Given that Spanish will be spoken 90% of the time during the school day (10% English), it’s really interesting to think about how they learn both languages, while covering science, math and other courses as delivered in Spanish. There is clearly a heavy focus on learning to learn, which I love. I want to point out that Luke is very well prepared for this Spanish Immersion program, thanks to his great C5 preschool teachers Ryan, Vashti, Erin, Alice, Linda, Esther and Holly. They all prepared him very well to confidently meet the challenges of his new program, and did so with smiles on their faces (I frankly don’t know how they do it – the kids would drive me crazy). We appreciate each of them very much. This post is a shout out to all the teachers who dedicate their time to working hard, most at way too low a wage, to help our kids become great learners, great doers and great people.
I can tell that Ms. Blackett is a great teacher, and that the kids and we will love her, and that we’ll all learn a bunch from her. I hope that you feel the same about your teachers. Thanks to Ms. Blackett and all the other great teachers out there. Please consider thanking your kid’s teacher during drop off or pick up today. If you appreciate your teacher, let them know. I’m sure that they would love to hear that you appreciate them.