Change Your Thinking, Change Your Child’s Life
Spark Creativity in Learning
Do you want your kids marching in order, being controlled in their classroom environments, and on a mission daily to prepare to pass tests? This is the way the majority of learning takes place so it must be right of course. What if there was something bigger and better out there for our kids? Are you willing to change your thinking if it would change your child’s life?
For me personally, I don’t want my child’s curiosity and gifts to be controlled, limited or reprimanded. I admit when I had one daughter I thought there was a clear-cut path to giving her the best, but now that I have two, I can see that inborn nature plays a HUGE part in their individual talents, skills, and personalities.
What are some tools parents can use to create an environment to empower our kids to explore and foster their unique talents, interests, and ideas?
Recently, I had the good fortune to be introduced through North Broward Preparatory School to George Couros, an amazing teacher, principal, innovative educator that blew my mind on the topic of learning, technology, and the parent-child connection.
His advice: Put the student first!
These are the key takeaways from an expert teacher, principal, author, worldwide speaker and education innovation thought master, George Couros on how we can help our kids to utilize their talents, skills, and creativity.
- Realize that learning is about creativity, not consumption. Consuming masses of knowledge for tests and lessons does not help kids to remember lessons long term. Creativity through writing or blogging, using technology to express ideas, having their voice heard in a collaborative environment will have a lasting effect on their confidence and long-term thinking.
- Learn to communicate with your kids by engaging in technology or be left behind. If you aren’t engaging with your kids in using technology then your kids will do it behind your back, leaving you in the dark. George recommends knowing their passwords, but not being overbearing. George compares it to driving. As parents, we teach our kids how to drive while they have their permit. We must be willing to be open to guiding, leading and showing them technology as well so they see the positive effects of the digital world.
- Collaboration makes kids smarter! North Broward Preparatory School is a fantastic example that teaches learning in a collaborative environment, thus empowering all learners to contribute their thoughts. Technology can open up doors for students to be global innovators discussing new ideas, and find solutions from a variety of cultures. What an exciting way to learn respect, tolerance, and world views.
- Giving kids a choice to learn about areas that interest them and how they learn. Creating an innovative learning experience that welcomes new thoughts and ideas can result in huge advantages for your child’s future. I had the honor to visit the incredible robotics lab and digital media center and music classes at North Broward Preparatory School and was blown away. I wanted to go back to school! As parents, it is important to build and encourage our child’s strengths and help them to pursue their interests- even if they are different than our own!
- Technology as a learning tool can be a powerful way to connect to your child’s interests. In his book, Innovator’s Mindset, author George Couros uses the examples of YouTube, FaceTime, Twitter, Skype, to actually connect to experts your kids want to learn more about. He poses the question…who would you rather learn about space from an astronaut or a teacher? Technology can make these experts accessible to expand our children’s minds!
In the conclusion of his book, George Couros leaves us with the thought:
“Change is the opportunity to do something AMAZING”.
This applies to allowing our kids to utilize technology to express their voice and creativity, which can expand globally and through time.
This quote also applies to us as parents. If you are like me, I was raised in a school where grades, class ranking, and test scores were the barometers of success. Now I understand as a parent I need to change my thinking to allow my kids to reach their full potential using their own set of talents, skills, and gifts. Which means recognizing the role technology plays in my child’s lives.
We all want to see our kids succeed in the real world. The answer is to change the conversation from one of control to engagement. The more we can connect with our kids empowering them to engage meaningfully using technology, the better we are setting them up as innovative leaders of the future, brighter job prospects and to most importantly allowing them to create the future they are destined for.
If you would like a VIP tour of North Broward Preparatory School to see the collaborative learning philosophy and incredible technological innovation for students available, make sure to book a VIP ihelpmoms.com tour HERE!