Do they proclaim, "There is a log in the road. My back hurts. It's impossible to go on."
Hardly. Pioneers say, "We'll chop that log into pieces, turn it in to paper so we can write our plans to reach our goals."
Love that spirit. It characterizes the leaders of the Coalition of Innovating Congregations.
What's the source of dogged determination?
One source is seeing the possible.
The technical term for kendonotkvetch (can do-not kvetch) is Appreciative Inquiry.
It is a way of growing an organization based on their "life giving forces."
When we see clearly how we are at our best, then we know how to go forward.
Vividly see your organization/congregation at its best. When does it already achieve it's goals?
William Ford Gibson, the writer, observes "The future is already here, it is just not widely distributed."
Right now fifteen Coalition Congregations are capturing the future of education that already exists.
Teams from the congregations have been given video equipment and training from See 3 in how to create a video. Each congregation's video will focus on their High Impact Model.
See 3 is a very cool group to work with, take a peek.
Over the last couple of months teams from the Coalition of captured images of
- family engaged in meaningful learning
- teachers supporting each other in creating 21st century learning experiences
- children building relationships with peers and across the generations
- active engagement that links learning and living (not learning about Judaism, but experiencing it)
- children engaging in rich content with Explora Torah, Teva, Hazon, and others to make meaning of the questions of their daily life and more
- learning that happens at bedtime, at the mall, in the playground, the fields and the classroom and nurtures a child's knowledge, sense of belonging, values/beliefs and lived action.
In May, at our Yachdav, we're holding a film festival.
Teams from the Coalition of Innovating comgregations will view one another's success videos.
These videos show the glimpse of the future that exists now. The "not classroom only model" already exists in small ways-in glimpses. The continued work for the Coalition is to turn their glimpses into a widely distributed reality.
Keeping Eyes on Success builds an attitude of possibility.
Here are six congregations that put eyes on success last year. They are on the move. Stirred by what works ...they can see where they are headed. Magnify and expand the good..which contrasts with complain and kvetch about what's wrong.
Of course all innovation is in a state of striving ...not a state of perfection.
Unfortunately, and occasionally, some congregational leaders glimpse their success with: "We are satisfied."
They are the ones who have back aches and don't pick up the next log in the road. Can we afford for any Jewish educational leader to say, "We are exactly where we want to be"
Pioneers have a different attitude. They see their success, are energized by it and use it as a guide for next steps.
Eyes on success generate the pioneer's requisite attitude of possibility.