Remember growing up playing backyard football or baseball and you would do something stupid and yell “Do over” or “I call mulligan”? If granted, you tried so much harder that second chance, didn’t you?
Today I bombed at something. Something that should’ve been easy, a breeze, etc. But when you are as passionate about something as I was today, sometimes nerves take over. I froze & brain turned to mush. Good for others, bad for me. All afternoon I have reflected on “coulda, shoulda, woulda.” But there are no mulligans here, so I must live with it.
In a conversation last week at cheer camp a coach told me “There are no do-overs in real life, kids need to learn that now.” Now that was in a different context about a weird situation she was in. But why? Why can’t kids have do-overs? No there are no do-overs in “life” but guess what, when you are a kid there should be! I’m sure kids invented the idea anyway.
Recently, I had a student tell me when he got home he kept thinking about different things he should’ve said during his presentation and asked to do it again. How could I say no?! How much time could he have spent thinking about this? Poor guy. Yeah I can relate!
We need to remember our goal is for the students to learn. Not perform on their best everyday. My student presented perfectly this time (I actually thought he did ok the 1st time). Our goal in the classroom is for the students to master the standard. If they have a bad day that doesn’t mean they have not mastered that standard. Why not give them a safe place to try again?
No, there are not do-overs in real life but school is not real life! It needs to be a safe place students can be successful. Needs to be a place of learning from mistakes. It needs to be a place students can show their learning, do-overs allow that.