Thursday, May 5, 2016
"Hi Jennifer. Where are you from?"
"I'm from St. Louis."
"Really, what part?"
"I live in Glendale."
"Nice, my aunt used to run a bakery in Warson Woods"
"Friends Bakery on Dunwoody? I've been there........
When I greet our graduate students on campus this summer there will be a lot of these conversations. Everyone has them. I enjoy them all. The older I get, the more places I have in common with people and the more important it is for me to connect; to reflect on common experience, to share time and place.
Children have this too, from an early age. We give children a task... "to grow up". Instinctively they seem to know that growing up involves connection. In supportive environments (like Montessori classrooms) we design the entire experience to make these connections. It's more important than the skills. It's about gratitude and appreciation. There is nothing trivial. Everything is important. Everything is connected. Making these connections to our world and feeling the interconnectedness of our universe is critical for children. It drives them, it is their Cosmic Task. It is the essence of peacemaking.
Our Cosmic Task is the title of the talk that will be delivered by Judith Cunningham, Executive Director of the Montessori Model UN program at a gathering on campus on June 30th. The Montessori Model United Nations is a transformational experience for children - I'll let her give you the details... not surprisingly ... it is about connection.
To all the incoming Montessori Teachers from all corners of the country I look forward to meeting you on campus, to greeting you, to our conversations and to connecting. This is the culminating experience of your Graduate Degree, enjoy it, experience it and connect. It is not trivial - it is not virtual, it is real.
See you soon,