Friday, March 11, 2011

it's all about doors

Science Day ’11

all of
education is about doors:

the infant and faces, meeting the eye and making the connection,
sounds that learn to be language,
muscles that learn to move, to crawl, to walk,
the power of words, of language,
the question, the choice,
the discovery of discovery,

fast forward and one is 10, 11, 12, 13, 14,
and door after door can appear open, or closed,
and one can feel ready, or unable, to open the door and go through,

so we have a Science Day
and each visitor who shares himself, who shares herself,
in talk and workshop is a doorkeeper
who steps from the place of science
within which each works,
where each finds light to reveal the workings
that hide beneath what we see on the surface,
each opens a door and invites a crossing over for a time
into revelation about DNA, gravity, rockets, Bonobos & us,

half the school also asks a question and ventures a hypothesis
that opens a door they find themselves,
ventures a procedure to get through
and reports what each finds on a poster of the experiment,
I am in awe of the brilliance
and daunted by how much work it takes to discipline the effort,
how hard it is to both feel the joy of discovery
and to make the needed work to make it to the top
where the truth is finally clear,
in the afternoon, advisee groups protect an egg in a big drop,
cheer when it survives, laugh when it doesn’t,
there’s even a rueful chant of “Break. . . break. . . break!”

throughout it all, it’s at heart about doors
and the making of every effort to be sure
that each stands open and available
to the right effort of any student drawn to such openness,

I love the kids’ faces as each is drawn
toward the wonder inherent in every moment,
to the joy so ready to release
when the key turns,
the lock releases,
and we are amazed with what we find behind the door.

by Henry Walker
March 11, ’11

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