Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Do you know the Muffin Man?

Do you know the Muffin Man? Or the chiropractor, the dentist, the banquet hall owner?  Do you know the district justice or the borough councilman?  Are you wishing to connect with your very own beekeeper or landscape architect?  Chances are, you could, simply by finding out where the local Rotary meets.  Having recently infiltrated been invited by one of my local Rotarian friends, Ed, this summer, I was once again reminded of the support that exists in this fellowship of community.   They sing, they joke, the pay money into a kitty that must go somewhere hugely community beneficial, because the dollar bills are plentiful, and flow freely amidst the camaraderie.  It is immediately evident that these are good people, with great connections, and a phenomenal desire for a better world.  Their only flaw appears to be that they meet during the school day, and I only get 30 minutes for lunch.

 The Te@chthought #reflectiveteacher blog challenge is:

Day 23

Write about one way that you “meaningfully” involve the community in the learning in your classroom. If you don’t yet do so, discuss one way you could get started.

 I have had the opportunity on several occasions to speak to the Rotary Club on projects close to me -- once I was invited to speak about Gifted Education in our district, and how our program was designed and implemented.  After the lunching, the singing, the birthday wishes and the dollar bills, this brain trust of the community attentively listened to my presentation, and then surrounded me with support.  It was amazing to me that individuals within the community were so actively engaged and willing to be a part of the education of our students. 

Many members of that small town posse offered time, job shadow opportunities, and asked more questions about the education of the gifted and talented.  That same group sponsors students from our high school in the form of scholarships to attend Rotary Youth Leadership conferences in the summer. 

Did you know that Rotary has opportunities for students?  Our high school has a Key Club, which introduces and promotes service at the high school level.  Plant the seed early, I suppose, is their goal.  The idea of service learning is not a new concept -- but the celebration of service learning continues on in these adults and happens in the form of a lifelong commitment in Rotarians.  They are, as the Te@chthought folks so eloquently define, meaningfully involved in the community of learning, and the community in general, for the students on my caseload.

If only I had more than 30 minutes for lunch, and the ability to carry a tune.  And maybe a stack of dollar bills, I'd be a Rotarian.

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