The meanings we make of ourselves in the world as hopeful and capable of empathy or, in contrast, as hopeless, fearful, and closed off evolve in countless moment-to-moment interactions. Social emotional learning, for all ages, is the only thing we need to preserve. I propose doing away with all academic curriculum for 6-12 months. All kids will “fall behind” at the same rate, releasing parents from the anxiety that seems to be driving a lot of decision-making.We can replace academic curriculum with what I would call a “listening curriculum.”Continue reading
Dance offers a kind of parallel process to infant-parent interaction. As teachers and students together choreograph new dances, missteps inevitably occur on the journey to a coherent graceful performance. Each class offers participants the opportunity to build that hope and agency anew.
Over ten years ago my own daughter’s countless hours of classes, rehearsal, and performance with the dance program played a central role in her development as she navigated the tumultuous middle school years. The experience became part of her core resilience now revealed in fortitude and flexibility as a doctor-in-training on the front lines of the pandemic.