Boozhoo!! What's Your "Workaround Value?"

Boozhoo is an Ojibwe word that is typically used as a greeting. I listened to a video from Eddy Robinson, Indigenous speaker and educator where he explained how the Anishinaabe way of knowing is to announce themselves to the universe when they meet someone. It identifies who they are and where they are from. Typically that greeting starts with the word Boozhoo. He says that it also means “I’m going to learn from you, and you can learn from me. I’m going to respect you and you can respect me.”

How different would the world be if we approached everyone with “boozhoo,” or “I am going to learn from you, and you are going to learn from me”?

I’ve been writing in my pocket notebook my thoughts, ideas, sketches, brainstorms, and randomness throughout the day and night. So, in honor of Boozhoo, I thought I’d share something I created from an Austin Kleon video about how to pay attention.


I've been trying to capture my thoughts more. 



As I have been jotting my thoughts down more, I heard this quote from Michael Bungay Stanier which came from the Year of Living Brilliantly. (Oh, the Eddy Robinson Boozhoo video and the Austin Kleon pocket notebook video came from there, too).

“It’s not what you know that makes you smart. It’s the connections you make between the things that you know. It’s the connections you make between A + B + C that sets you up for success.” MBS

Which then brought me to the idea of something I’ll coin as “Workaround Value.” How many times does our first idea not work? or our 2nd? or 3rd? How many times are we in a classroom and the internet doesn’t work, the website is now blocked, 3 kids don’t have their Chromebooks, the projector is only showing 1/3 of the screen, In the middle of a test, the class lizard escaped and is now running up the wall which caused you to spill your coffee! etc. etc.

Teachers are so resilient. They’ll find so many ways to find a workaround. But I think those work arounds come from all those connections you make between your processes, your systems, your growth mindset, your life experiences, how many random hours you’ve spent on education related social media pinning/saving/liking all the things, and on and on. A lot of times the solutions are easy. Sometimes, they aren’t.

When you run into a roadblock do you get stuck, or do you start to think about connections that could work to get around it? Have you went down this road before? Is there someone that you know has been there before? Is there something similar that could work? Have you tried to Google it? Or Googled “alternatives to _____,” Did you ask the room or your students for a solution?

The next time something doesn’t go as planned, whether it’s tech-related or life-related, what would your “Workaround Value” be?

May your day be great.

Stay Curious.

Give more than you take.

Boozhoo. What can you learn from me? What can I learn from you? Throw some learning in the comments. 

Matt

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