When my children were young and I was trying to keep them safe from harm, I repeated to them often, "There are four powerful things in the world: Your mind, your tongue, guns, and cars." It was a simple reminder that we must grow up in mastery over powerful things, so that we can learn to use them to love others rather than to hurt them. I think my kids could still quote the mantra back to me, even today.
When my students enroll in my classes, I intend to do more than just deliver specified data into their ears and eyes. I intend to offer them keys to their own powerful vehicle, and coach them to drive their own learning with growing mastery. When I do, I've seen my students respond in three distinct ways:
1. Some students take the keys, fire up their vehicle, and drive immediately into a ditch.
2. Fearing the ditch, some students panic at the sheer power offered to them, and refuse to take the keys. Often, these students will request (or even demand) that I drive for them. This option, I will calmly refuse.
3. Some students receive their keys with gratitude, recognize the ditches, fire up their vehicle, and learn to drive masterfully. These few are now equipped to explore breathtaking destinations.
I'm not only teaching a topic - I'm teaching them how to learn. - c