In a busy workshop today I was working with one student whilst others were coming up to me asking, "Ellen, ellen, what do you think of my work?" And another " Ellen what can I do to improve it?" I replied to both of them, "hey, just give me a minute whilst I finish talking here and whilst you are waiting why don't you ask someone else in the group what they think?"
I could see them looking around and then next minute they headed over to Naia who advises them "I think you should use more tone over here by making it a lot darker" and to other student Naia said, "Oh, I would say you are finished and so you can move onto the next stage". Content with the advice both students received from a 7 year old they were eager to move on. Once I had finished talking I simply said "Well, I couldn't agree more, great advice Naia!"
Who better to ask for advice than someone who lives their skills, regardless of their age
From then on the other students referred to Naia as the 'GoTo' for advice....and when Naia looked up saying "Well who do I go to?" Everyone raised their hand calling "Choose me, choose me", Naia beamed with delight. Teaching just doesn't get better than that.
In your family, community, school, club and business there will be people who have amazing strengths in areas that are different to yours. These people could be older, younger, friends of yours or friends waiting to happen. Anyone can be a 'Go To' and all we need to do is ask. You maybe a 'GoTo' for advice on maths, relationships, dance, storytelling, technology, art, sport......It's endless because the capacity of human skills and passion is endless. Who better to ask for advice than someone who lives their skills, regardless of their age.
Everyone can be a 'Go To' for someone and all we need to do is ask
I really believe that a major part of being a great educator, a committed parent or a good friend is about recognising the individual strengths in your students, siblings, workmates and then most importantly utilising them. There is a sense of accomplishment when you guide someone with a task they are struggling with and there is a sense of kinship when you receive that guidance yourself. So what are you waiting for! There are people all around you that need your 'Go To' strengths and you need theirs.