The following post was my contribution to the edu180atl project for the 2011-12 school year. During the final week in May, members of the founding team wrote reflections on the power of this learning project and all 180 posts of learning are archived on the site. My reflections centered on the concept of wide-awakeness…something I am trying to grow in myself and also the inspiration for this blog.
Without the ability to think about yourself, to reflect on your life, there’s really no awareness, no consciousness. Consciousness doesn’t come automatically; it comes through being alive, awake, curious, and often furious. ~Maxine Greene
I have felt alive, awake, curious, and furious this 2011-12 school year. Consuming the wisdom generated from 175 posts, and now creating this 176th post, I have gained greater consciousness about learning and schooling and being in this world.
And I feel wide-awake to possibility.
Maxine Greene’s words about being wide-awake in the world serve as a reminder…and so will the 45,000 words posted to this site from August 1st to May 25th. Open eyes, open ears, and open hearts allow for learning to happen. The edu180atl project, a small-seed-of-an-idea back in the spring of 2011, blossomed in the fall and has been producing the most diverse and substantive fruit for 175 days. For that I am grateful.
And on this 176th day, I feel wide-awake to possibility.
What if all of our classrooms and teams and schools and school systems sought to cultivate students’ spirit of wide-awakeness — their spirit of wanting to know and learn? What if we educators — both teachers and administrators — sought to cultivate that spirit in ourselves and in others? How might we change? What would the possibilities look like?
If we all had greater consciousness about learning and schooling and being in this world, the possibilites would be endless…for our students…for our selves…for our schools…and maybe even for our society. So, what have I learned? That it’s time to pursue such wide-awakeness with the reckless abandon of being alive, awake, curious, and furious every day. Not just during the 180 days of the school year. Or on the 176th.
About the Author: Megan Howard (@mmhoward), co-founder of edu180atl and passionate learner, is grateful for what the edu180atl project has taught her this year. She can’t wait for August 1, 2012, which will mark the second year of this important and inspiring project.