Risk and Reflection/Rest and Relaxation

Yin Yang

This thought/image came to me as I was reflecting on the ways we stay balanced and healthy in both mind and spirit in our schools.  On the one hand, it is very important to be able to decompress  and relax at the end of a day.  The same is also true for those times in the classroom or in the staff room when we stop and simply enjoy the company of others.  Students and staff alike need these times.

The second R and R, Risk and Reflection, represents that wonderful cycle of growth that occurs in staff and students when they are operating outside of their safety zone.  When coupled with a strong sense of passion, the growth and learning that happens can be startling.  Think of the leap of faith that a student takes when they volunteer to lead an activity or perform at a school talent show.  There is no turning back from these experiences and when reflection is a part of the cycle, growth and learning almost always follow.

As adults in the field of learning, we need to promote and model a balance of both rest and relaxation, and risk and reflection.  Take care, Brent


About ottawabrent

Principal of a Middle School in Ottawa, Ontario Canada
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10 Responses to Risk and Reflection/Rest and Relaxation

  1. Howdy,

    Nice job – happy to welcome you to the world of blogging. You should add an rss so that I can add you to my reader. How else will I keep up with you? Haha.


  2. Dave Meister says:

    Nice initial post and welcome to the blogosphere! It is our job to put students and staff in the position where they feel comfortable to take the risks that will stretch their capacities and help them grow to meet future challenges. I like the risk you are taking to put your thoughts “out” there. Keep it up!

  3. georgecouros says:

    Welcome Brent 🙂

  4. Barbara McLaughlin says:

    You motivate your staff every day to take risks with your acceptance and “I’ve got your back” attitude!

    Thanks for including me!


  5. Félicitations, Brent!

    Too often teaching can be an isolating profession in which teachers get so caught up with the kids and the programs that they forget to socialize (and laugh with and learn from) each other. End-of-year staff parties are so much more fun when you’ve been exchanging ideas and cracking jokes with each other all year. Ditto end-of-year kid parties.


  6. Erin Paynter says:

    A great post Brent, and right on the nose. I’ve just recently witnessed what can happen when a staff member didn’t listen to her body’s/mind’s need to decompress and it wasn’t pretty.
    I love the risk and reflection piece especially. Having just spent two days learning about myself and cultural proficiency, not only am I seeing a cycle of risk and reflection, but to coin a CP phrase, it seems more of an upward spiral – one constantly building on the other.
    Cheers, and Jeff and I are coming to see you soon!!

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