August 25, 2015

Drums

 August 25, 2015 {237/365} Drums

"Life is about rhythm. We vibrate, our hearts are pumping blood, 
we are a rhythm machine." ~ Mickey Hart, Grateful Dead drummer

Today, I began my twenty-second year as an educator in the Pewaukee School District. Although my roles continually evolve (this year, I'm full-time EdTech/EE coach with an overload of one Blended French 4/5 course), every year really begins the same way. We meet as a district to reconnect with colleagues, to celebrate the successes of the previous year, and to get inspired/motivated for the new school year. Although the scenario is the same, the theme is always unique. This year's focus is on pride, gratitude, and teamwork. We shared our pride in the work that we do both individually and collectively. We reflected in gratitude, keeping in mind the idea that "It is not happy people who are thankful. It is thankful people who are happy." And finally, we not only talked about the necessity of working as a team to achieve our common mission, we lived it! 

[Photo courtesy of the Pewaukee School District
JoAnn Sternke, Superintendent, rocking her African costume!]

Under the guidance of our superintendent, all teachers, administrators, coaches, support staff, and even school board members participated in a giant drum circle. Over three hundred people worked together to create rhythm and music. Sometimes our beats were in unison and sometimes we had individual parts to play ("ham and cheese", "peanut butter sandwich", "mac, mac and cheese"). What a fitting metaphor for education! We are all working in harmony to educate the students of Pewaukee -- sometimes as a district, sometimes in smaller groups (schools, departments, etc.) and sometimes, we have to improvise, to find our own beats.