We sat on the grass in silence and waited. A few kids saw us and sat down too. Eventually the others noticed and joined us in the circle. I drew a square on the large piece of paper in the middle. My colleagues Joc and Motti drew a roof and a door respectively. A pause… Tania was the first child to take the pen and add to the picture and then the kids each took a turn to draw something. The teachers had not yet said a word!
It was part of a leadership day for our primary school captains and the message of this particular activity was that one can lead by example without actually telling anyone to do anything. When we discussed it afterwards, they got the point quickly, as I knew they would.
But what surprised me was the conversation during the time the teachers were silent…
Others: ‘I want to draw the windows’.
‘I’m drawing a tree’.
‘Give me the pen.’
‘No, don’t push, we should be taking turns’.
‘Yes, they want to see if we will take turns’.
‘Let’s go round the circle and each draw one thing.’
‘Maybe it’s supposed to be the school.’
‘We have people in it, it’s a community.’
‘It represents a community of learners….’
I think I got more pleasure out of the spontaneous conversation than the planned discussion.