A recent survey let us know that many of you are interested in the topic of joy. One survey respondent said she would love any resources that could help promote a climate of joy during this challenging time. The latest Exchange Reflections is titled “Finding Joy in Our Work,” based on an article by Luis Hernandez.
The article discusses ways we help children find joy in learning, as well as the kinds of things we can do to uplift ourselves as adults. Hernandez explains this about children’s learning: “Based on research and practice, the book Developmentally Appropriate Practices in Early Childhood Programs (NAEYC, 2009) authors Carol Copple and Sue Bredekamp challenge teachers and others who work with children on positive approaches embracing learning and joy. It is not one or the other, one better than another — but an approach that is both/and. For example, know that the joys in children’s exploration and discovery go hand-in-hand with foundational elements in development and learning. As we strive for that sense of excellence in daily work, developmentally appropriate practices demand both work and joy. Sweat, dedication, and expertise are the engines in creating meaningful learning experiences. The reward, as such, is the joy in the process and progress in the development and learning for each child.”
For ourselves, Hernandez asserts: “Joy is that ephemeral chemical in the silliest interactions or unexpected hugs and smiles. Joy is sharing with co-workers the successes of the day. Joy is resolving difficult relationships and challenging moments. Joy is earned through difficult steps. Joy is hard work.”
The Exchange Reflections offers many ideas to discuss about what it means to truly experience joy in our work – no matter what the circumstances of our world might be.
Exchange Reflections are designed to help a team of people meet in-person or live online to think deeply together about a topic using an article from Exchange magazine as a guide. Included are discussion questions to help guide reflections, as well as a "Making Commitments" idea sheet to help prompt ideas into action and an Exchange Reflections Certificate. For your convenience, Exchange Reflections are available in PDF format and you can download immediately on your desktop.
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Thank you for your wonderful insight. What a great reminder of what joy can do in this world.
Dear esteemed colleagues, I would like to suggest that it is not just learning that is strengthened when joy is present but something even more profound....our human spirit. Through moments of wonder, awe, joy, and acts of kindness and empathy our human spirit is enriched which leaves us more open for leaning, deepening relationships, connecting to the world. It is a system, we are part of a system... and learning is just a part of the system. Joy is just part of the system. I suggest we take another step further out when we make connections about learning...as it is not the final goal of development. For me, the goal of education is to growth healthy and kind human beings..