Sunday, November 1, 2015

The Value of Connection

Since our earliest days on this planet, we have clearly understood the value of our connection and our ability to work cooperatively with others.  Our service to one another within various communities, consistently demonstrates the benefits and joys that accompany connection. We were not meant to live out our existence in isolation. Quite the contrary, we were meant to make available an infinite supply of knowledge and resources for our human counterparts. It is imperative to our survival that we continue to take advantage of this.  

Simply put, we are better together than we are apart.

Working in collaboration with one another as global citizens increases our chances for success, in a world where common challenges are shared. Sharing perspectives and strengthening our connections with each other doesn't  just  move communities forward, it allows for forward movement on a global scale as well. International communities move forward because global leaders collaborate.

Through our connections with others today, we inspire and elevate each other to potentially great heights.  Moreover, our growth is a direct result of the new connections and resources that we continue to pursue. Making ourselves available to each other and investing in our progress, is a definite recipe for success.

Our personal success stories are a direct result of the connections that we make with others and the manner in which they influence our lives. As children we sought connections with adult role models from various areas of our lives. Family, teachers, and coaches were happy to serve in this capacity and their influence still lives within us today.  Our connection with them as children has unquestionably shaped our lives as adults. Our approach in establishing relationships with children today is a direct reflection of their guidance.

As a 21st century educator, I embrace the reality that each September a new group of enthusiastic students arrive on my doorstep.  Each one is eagerly looking to make a connection and build a relationship. Connections with each student may vary in intensity, but each student needs to believe that they are special and a valued member of our classroom community. These connections are vital to the development of student confidence and the attainment of their personal success.

The other day while attending a funeral service for a beloved colleague and friend,  I experienced first hand the value of student/teacher connection. In a touching eulogy, one of our former students spoke eloquently about his beloved teacher and friend who had recently passed away. He spoke of an emotional connection with his beloved teacher and friend that had ultimately  transformed his life. Her belief and faith in him, along with her unwavering commitment to him over the years, led to great personal triumphs. Perhaps the most noteworthy finds him today serving as a successful classroom teacher. Her connection to him and thousands of other students, will be an enormous part of her professional legacy.

Our ability to connect with each other continues to increase at an unprecedented rate due to the tools provided by social media. We must continue to use these tools as a vehicle to drive personal and social change. The chances for global progress as a result of global connectivity has never been greater. It is imperative that we continue to take advantage of this opportunity and then pass it on to our children. Then, hopefully like us, they will find joy in the world they inherit and understand the true value of connection.

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