Saturday, February 12, 2011

Now I Get It

Yesterday my youngest daughter, Makenzie, taught our 9th grade FACS class the art of cake decorating. Makenzie is a student at a culinary school with her prime focus on pastry. Our FACS teacher was one day discussing they were going to start on baking and would like to do cake decorating, but had little expertise in the area. I gave her Makenzie's email, they made connections and Makenzie had some time off before she starts her internship, so things worked out well.

I, of course, had to go down to the class to observe as Makenzie had expressed her nervousness the night before over teaching the class. She also remembered what 9th grade girls are like and how attentive they can/cannot be. When I was a high school principal I used to joke with the freshmen that I wouldn't talk with them much during their freshman year, I would wait until the next year when they became real people.

I was shocked to see how attentive those eight girls were on what Makenzie was showing them and how comfortable Makenzie got in her role as teacher. Mrs. Howard sat at the back of the room running the video and taking notes on Makenzie's instruction. When Makenzie would demonstrate then ask for someone to try the technique, the girls jumped at the chance, never once was it come one someone give it a shot, their enthusiasm to try something new, and in some cases difficult, amazed me.

They will now have a cake decorating competition in which they will skype with Makenzie for tips and she will judge the final products, and this will be tough on her as she will really connected with those girls.

Okay now I get it:
I understand passion-saw it first hand in the instruction and the students
What we do in school goes way beyond core curriculum
The use of technology to aid in instruction
Connections with students is the most vital thing we do in school

The last thing Makenzie made her old man proud.

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