On Giftedness and the MOtion, EMOtion and MOTivation– (the three stoogies)
“… When I feel I am moving forward, I feel good, it makes me WANT to go further, deeper and beyond..” (a relative that preferred to remain anonymous! ;-D, 2010)
Looking back on the recent couple of years of schooling that had been experienced by a family member, the ups and downs, the disasters, emotional fallout, feel good times and changes, I was intrigued to know what it was that had made one school experience so very much different from another.. I wondered.. what it had been about a previous school experience, that had made it hard for this student to get up out of bed, stay up late (not studying).. be anxious, at times bad-tempered, unresponsive, angry, fearful and generally compliant, disinterested, and then…. what was it about the present school, that had changed all that.
Changed it to:
A student that got up on their own volition, to make an early Irish class, and was worried if they were late. A student who goes and organises their school bag the night before, to be sure they are prepared for the next day (a behaviour never before observed in their lifetime). A student who voluntarily stays after school to study, as doing well on the moros test is important to them. A student who makes their own, conscious decision to go to bed early, as they want to be (in their words) ‘feeling their best’ in the am.
In discussing what it was that was, several reasons were offered and reflected on. However, probably the most poignant ones were that in contrast to the previous school there were three changes that had made a huge difference.
a. In a previous school, students were compelled to address their teachers by their last names and obey without question their directives and decisions. By comparison in the new school, the students are encouraged to call their teachers by their first names, and are encouraged, within reason, and respect to question and reason with their teachers. Thus fostering a sense of validation and equal importance and respect.
b. Subjects taught in a previous school, were not always taught by a member of the staff that was enthusiastic about what it was they were teaching, seemed to go through the motions, and discouraged conversational engagement by students outside the classroom environment once a class was finished.. They distanced themselves. By comparison, the new schools teachers are, in every subject ‘exquisitely’ passionate about their subjects, and teach accordingly, they are so passionate that they not only enjoy students accosting them after class to continue discussions, but encourage and embrace it.. they breed enthusiasm and engagement because they love what they do and share…
c. In a previous school students good at sports were recognised, with several awards ceremonies over the year, many many matches planned were they could shine, and free buses for their school classmates, who were often ‘strongly encouraged’ (even if not particularly interested) in attending. Their evidence of their triumphs where clearly visible to all around the corridors. Those who excelled in academic subjects were appreciated, did have an awards evening, however there was not really much else. Yesm they were expected to study hard, do well, for to uphold the schools good record. However there seemed little evidence of involvement/encouragement to partake in things like an organised Debate Club, Math/Science Olympiads or other activities of that type which very bright students can have a yearning for.. A brilliant essay by a student, would never get the same attention as a brilliant goal by a sports person, which may have been talked about for many weeks on end.. In the present school, Debate is actively encouraged, both in school and at outside venues; this student has had a teacher ask permission to use their essay as an example/sample with 400 other students, as it was so well thought of.. imaging the feel good factor there…
That quote got me thinking.. what was this young person speaking about?
Motion is moving, moving forward at a pace and angle that is comfortable, but also like a runner, fast enough to feel the edge… that feel good flow which somehow makes one feel they could go on forever, reaching/matching the optimum rhythm of ones heart/mind with every step..
Emotion is feeling, senses alerted locked on to experiences that radiate purpose, sometimes exquisite, sometimes exquisitely painful in a good way.. making one know without a doubt they are alive, quiveringly so.. and loved for feeling so, wrapped in a world where it is ok to see/feel so clearly.. to follow a passion wherever it leads..to challenge it.. to fight for it… a fuzzy warmth and contented with life secure feeling that ‘those who teach me, understand if I feel deeply, if I react strongly if I appear chaotic… it’s ok, they know.. it is life to me..I know I will work for them…’
Motivation is a marriage of the two.. being allowed to feel quiveringly alive, and move at the speed one can/desires to cope with, within the realms of passion that one wishes to follow… and a great deal of belief from others breeding belief in oneself…
Three stoogies… MO, EMO AND MOT…..one, is never far from the other two, in Gifted…….;-D…