This is the tweet that started it all. This was the foundation for Kids Deserve It. When talking about what inspired us and what we wanted to do in education, this quote came about. And both of us agreed that no matter what we want, or how we want to change education, the kids are number one. Every decision must center around what’s best for them.
An easy trap that we can fall into is the belief that teaching is about a job. That it’s all about us. Our rules, our instruction, our decorations, our classrooms.
Schools exist for kids. Period.
We have to stop acting like school is something that exists so we can have a job, and we have to start bringing more student voices into the conversation.
Often a common misconception is that because you may work with younger students, you can’t allow them to share their voices. That isn’t true in the least bit!
Often times kids’ beliefs, wishes, and aspirations are so pure. As we grow older as adults, a lot of the time we lose that purity of childhood thought and wonder, and it leaves us so gradually sometimes we don’t even notice that it has left.
Time after time, I’m reminded of the power of conversation. Of allowing a child to tell me what they would design the classroom like. How they would organize their day. What books they want to read. And so much more. When we begin to open up those lines of communication we begin to tear down walls we may have not even known existed and we begin to create environments where everyone’s voice is valued.
Imagine walking into a school as a teacher, and knowing you had no say or no control over any aspect, not even the space in which you would be spending most of your day. You’d feel locked down and controlled. Our kids feel the same way. We have to stop treating school like it’s a place where adults make all the decisions and kids have to just deal with it. And start treating school and our classrooms as a partnership where every voice matters.
Schools exist for kids. And if we truly believe that, then we have no other choice but to start listening to the kids in our schools. We need to amplify their voices and not our own. We need to make sure we don’t fall into that mindset of “it’s just a job”. Our kids are waiting with abaited breath to see what we’re going to come up with next. So let’s create environments that are completely focused on THEM, because the Kids Deserve It.
And don’t forget to share your stories. Use the hashtag #KidsDeserveIt to share how you’re connecting, and inspiring others with creative ideas! You can also follow @KidsDeserveIt to continue connecting with us and subscribe to our Remind class with this link! You can also connect with us on Voxer! Our voxer handles are techninjatodd and awelcome