When working on whole child initiatives in Denver Public Schools, the then head of human resources, Debbie Hearty, used to say that focusing on the whole child helped bring educators back to the heart space of teaching and learning. I believe The Elephant in the (Class)room does the same – it helps connect educators with their passion for teaching.

Over the last few months, I’ve had the privilege of connecting with 16 teacher leaders and mentors who opted into a learning opportunity to expand their understanding of The Elephant in the (Class)room and have seen firsthand the power of time spent in this heart space. Together, we deeply explored the Profiles in Practice and Experience Journeys to help us consider what it might look like to bring the Anchors for Equity to life in schools and districts.

We spent two sessions on each Anchor for Equity in this six-session series. During the first two convenings, we discussed what it means and looks like to embrace teaching and learning as a dynamic relational human exchange. We explored the connection between this anchor and foundational positive youth development research and the science of learning and development. We heard from staff and students at Casco Bay High School about their unique school culture and from Dr. Dawn Brooks-DeCosta about a powerful relationship-building experience among staff and students. We looked back at our own learning experiences and heard from Chrystal Seawood about creating humanizing learning environments and Angela Daniel about using asset framing…

Read the full Column on Youth Today 

We welcome your contributions to the topic. Please reach out to talkwithus@kpcatalysts.com if you’d like to join to the discussion.

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