Another kind of tool we use in Agile Learning are meetings. Face to face meetings are a very efficient way to share information. They are brief and focused, so that we can get back to whatever people are choosing to do with their day.
DAILY MEETINGS – INTENTION, REFLECTION, GRATITUDE
We have two or three meetings that frame the day.
The first is a Morning Meeting where the community breaks into small groups, and each member checks in with their group and states their intentions for the day. It’s a powerful efficient tool that accomplishes several things at once. First, it grounds each individual in the community, where they are both heard and hold space for others to speak. Second, it transitions them from whatever was happening before school to their day, and allows them to bring their attention to the day ahead. Third, it gives everyone a chance to say out loud what they are intending to do. As we all know, not all the intentions are going to happen, but moving into the day with intention helps us to not move through the day in reaction to other people’s agendas. A group of 10 people might meet ten minutes.
Mirroring the Morning Meeting is the Afternoon Meeting, where group members return to their group and reflect to themselves and to the group how the day went and what they did, how they did or did not meet their intentions, and whatever else they want to mention. Again, a quick and powerful meeting that brings additional awareness to each individuals capacity to shape their day, and what the results are.
The entire group might come back together and share Gratitudes. A chance to be grateful, and recognize the abundance around you, contributes to each individual’s well being, and to the well being of the group. It’s also a great chance to check in with the entire community.
CHECK IN/CHANGE UP
I spoke about Check In/Change Up in a previous post. That meeting happens once a week at a time that is good for the school, and is where we make new agreements to reinforce community norms. We will alternate weekly between Thursdays and Fridays to be able to incorporate every part time member of our group.
SET THE WEEK
Usually, Morning Meeting starts the day, but on Monday or the first day of the week, we start with Set the Week. At this meeting, everyone figures out times for activities that multiple people might participate in, so that key activities don’t overlap. We draw a calendar of Monday to Friday, broken into 1 hour blocks, and decide what activities might happen when. Anybody in the group might make an offering about a particular activity at a particular time – anything from a game of kickball to a math class. Some of the offerings require a firm commitment from the people participating to account for supplies, etc. Most offerings people can choose in the moment whether or not to participate. All offerings are optional – nobody is required to attend anything, except these regular meetings.
In the next post, I’ll take about some ways we share our learning.