A space to reflect on my readings and musings, scattered and rescattered


Learning is Kewl...LOL, or Dulce

I feel like my whole life is big bucket of learning these days. Today I taught my grandma to chat on gmail (an instant messaging program like AIM, Yahoo, MSN, whatever). It took just a second and she was super excited. As I talked her through it on the phone and messaged her, she asked if my "lol" meant "lots of love" and, well, it sort of did, even though her question created another "lol" in me. I'm always so motivated by my grandma's interest in learning new things in her late-60s. She reads more than anyone else I know and is far more technologically literate than any of her children (my parents and aunts and uncles are scary bad with computers). She's also becoming increasingly liberal and open-minded. Again, cool.

Anyway, so that's my cute story for the day. But my other story involves my own learning with my new interest in (or better, obsession with) SALSA. I never learned to dance as a not at all. I've been made fun of for my bad dance moves and lack of rhythm more times than I can count. I'm currently trying to overcome my feelings that I'll never be a good dancer. And in that process I'm learning a lot about learning. My dance teachers really push me to try new things and they scaffold new steps sometimes more clearly than other times. Let me tell you, I'm very grateful for the times when they walk through the new stuff slowly and patiently and then come over and give me personal assistance when I'm stumbling through. It's humbling but also empowering in a way. But I'm also noticing something else really powerful: the sweet feeling of success, of getting the step right and knowing you've got it. There's also that moment before you totally get it right when you get super-close and you know you're going to get it. The enthusiasm that bubbles up is really rich and, well, dulce! So how does this relate to my life as a teacher? Well, it reminds me that I need to do my best to create opportunities for that sweet feeling of success to bubble up.


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