Monday, March 23, 2015

Learning From the Full Space

Discovery Green: Houston, TX

The last three days at the ASCD Annual Conference involved some of the best learning moments I have experienced all school year. In many ways, I was so excited about this conference. I presented with a colleague that I highly respect both personally and professionally. I knew I would see some friends. I was excited about visiting Houston for the first time. The conference Keynote, Sarah Lewis, is a woman I desperately wanted to hear and be inspired by. There was so much I was looking forward to as I boarded the plane on a snowy Friday night in Baltimore to travel to Houston.

Now that the conference is over, what I am starting to process is a little bigger than the learning that took place in a chair or through the words of some very brilliant and talented educators. I made a decision to learn differently during this trip. I made a decision to learn from full space in which I found myself. 

I learned how the sun changes as you fly above the clouds during sunset. I learned that striking up a conversation with a stranger could be the best sharing of ideas I have all week. I learned that Houston is beautiful in the afternoon sun. I learned that this city has a stunning vision for green space which many urban areas could learn from. I learned that in every space there is art - art that moves me. I watched a community come together to celebrate the power of dance. With sun shinning down, the crowd cheered as they watch kids of all ages in one of the bravest displays of talent - performing. I learned how deeply my heart needs creative spaces surrounded by new ideas. I learned to notice in new ways.

I learned that I have been doing this all wrong. In new spaces, with new people, with a new sunrises and different sculptures, learning is about seeking inspiration, seeing beauty, and recognizing how my heart feels to be full of connections and conversations.

So as I wrap up the last day of ASCD and I reflect on my learning, I realize that what was disrupted within me was very different than what I expected from this experience.

Let's learn. Fully.

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