Kathy Donchak

Sunday Letter: Encouraging Opinion Makers

Published 10 months ago • 1 min read

“People can tell you to keep your mouth shut, but that doesn't stop you from having your own opinion.”
― Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

This month teachers are busy studying pedagogy, human development, tasks, and knowledge for the coming school year to form a community of learners and meet the needs of all students without losing their footing in a rapidly changing environment.

As a mother of two independent learners, I ask myself, what do they want to learn? How can I create an environment and dialogue that seeks their input?

Over the last few years, I have studied journal writing for personal renewal and creativity while sharing techniques with our children. They have learned to think on paper, to express themselves creatively, and to see the journal as a safe landing zone for the questions of adolescence.

This idea of thinking on paper is not new, but what if we created a community of learners who reflected on their learning experiences in a way that helps them develop the agency needed to thrive by empowering them with self-understanding and skills to communicate their needs?

I believe that lifelong learning is a social gift. One that begins with an education not based on passing on conclusions but rather one that facilitates discovery.

We engage learners by teaching them how to discover what excites them and by recognizing our role as catalysts to the next generation of opinion makers.

Kathy Donchak

I write about nature, family, creativity, and wellbeing.

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