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Puppies and students profit from patience, persistence, and proximity

June 26th

Summer has finally arrived and  I am enjoying some quality family time.  This summer, my college son insisted that we procure a new puppy for our family.  (Enter Pewter stage left)  Puppies and students profit from patience, persistence and proximity.

Pewter is our precious Silver Labrador Retriever.  Puppy with  capitol P and all that it entails.
After a month of working with Pewter 3 words guide our actions:  patience, persistence, and proximity.  It occurs to me that our students deserve and teachers must employ all three actions for proper classroom management and academic achievement.  Author Paulo Coehlo, +Paulo Coelho  @PauloCoehlo asserts, “Why is patience so important? Because it makes us pay attention.”  Our students need our apt attention. We need to be able to observe behavior and make minute adjustments to our behavior and their assignments. Patience is a virtue for teachers and parents of puppies and it requires persistence.

 Persistence with puppies requires the parent to persist in teaching commands and family expectations.  Gever Tully,  @Gever +Gever Tulley founder of Brightworks School argues that  students learn in a similar way.  "Persistence and resilience only come from having been given the chance to work though difficult problems." Luckily, most of our students don't bite and are already potty trained. That said, they still have much to learn, and teachers must allow the students to struggle and fail. Being patient and persistent encourages the parent/teacher/student to value proximity.

The flipped movement in education actually urges the practice of proximity. Students need their teachers to be present while they are learning and practicing new skills. Puppies desire proximity for similar reasons. Proximity in both cases helps build  relationships. AHHHH! Relationships do matter!  As the parent/teacher/student builds appropriate relationships proximity is desired and patience and persistence become easier.  Ultimately, puppies and students will profit from the appropriate use of patience, persistence, and proximity.

+ I hope that all educators can endeavor to find other interesting connections this summer. Passion fuels our performance!


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