I came across this quote the other day as I was completing my holiday shopping and it struck me. How often do I miss the magic in the day to day? Do I truly watch the world around me with glittering eyes or am I too hurried, consumed, and pre-occupied to notice? As I am enjoying the slower pace of Winter Break, I am trying to be intentional about viewing the world through glittering eyes and experiencing the magic of life.
Yesterday, the girls in my family went to a local musical production of Mary Poppins. I sat in childlike wonder as the stage magically came to life with singing, dancing, beautiful costumes and special effects. Throughout the production, I continued to glance over at my 6 year old niece who was mesmerized in every scene. Her eyes were glittering. She reminded me of a young Tisha watching it on the movie screen for the first time. You see, Mary Poppins was my very favorite movie growing up. As a child I would listen to the soundtrack on a record over and over again memorizing the words to the songs. I have memories of hanging upside down on our backyard jungle gym saying "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" over and over again until I was able to speak it fluidly. It didn't stop there. Once I'd mastered learning how to say it, I then learned how to say and spell it backwards as well. It's so funny to think back on this now. I was captivated by the movie's magic and wanted to bring that magic into my own life by learning everything I could about it.
This is the kind of magic I want my students to feel when they learn in my classroom. I want their eyes to glitter with anticipation and wonder. I want them to go home and take the learning farther by practicing the cooking methods; adding their own special twists, and creative touches. I'd hope that they would then share their learning with others by serving their creations to their family and friends. But, I don't want it to stop there. I want that experience to lead into another and another. The magic of learning shouldn't ever end.
We can be intentional about creating magical experiences for our students just as the amazing cast of Mary Poppins did. There is magic all around us if we truly look; it's all about perspective. Do we hurry through life focusing on the the "to-do's", the missed opportunities, our failures & regrets, our stress & lack of time. Or, do we choose to look with glittering eyes at the magic that surrounds us? We can learn so much from the daily interactions with those that we encounter and life's every day happenings when we choose to.
When you step foot into a Dollar Tree store do you see low-priced merchandise or amazing props and ideas to make your classroom come to life?
When you go on a walk do you truly notice the beauty of your surroundings and think about how you could bring your kids outdoors to experience it, or how to bring nature inside?
When you watch television do you think about how you could layer those themes over your curriculum to make your content come to life?
What about visiting your local businesses? Do you establish relationships and invite them into your classroom?
How many great secrets are we missing by not paying attention? How many missed opportunities have passed us by? In Mary Poppins, Bert sensed that something was brewing and about to begin. He was paying attention to the world around him. He was looking with glittering eyes at the magic of life? The greatest secrets are hidden in the most unlikely places. Do you believe in magic? I do, and I'm on the hunt to find it. Who's joining me?
Tech Integration Specialist in Southern Oregon and author of Make Learning Magical. I'm passionate about finding innovative ways to transform teaching and create unforgettable experiences in the classroom.