This is a week of teachers’ meetings for me marking the beginning of the 2009-2010 school year. Our new students will arrive next Tuesday, but this week is traditionally spent in meetings about new curriculum, new district procedures, etc. My staff did something unusual this year. Yesterday, instead of sitting in the library at school for all-day meetings, we met at a location in the forest near Snoqualmie, Washington, (a 40 minute drive from Seattle), for a day of team building and challenges.
The organization that lead us through these mental and physical challenges is called Challenges Northwest. Our large staff (including our Instructional Assistants and office staff) was divided into 4 teams, and each team had to work through a series of physical challenges. None of these challenges was dangerous, but it was not possible to accomplish each task unless the entire team worked together. There was a tremendous amount of problem-solving and communication that had to be done, and then we actually had to perform the task. It was hard work, but terrific fun! And at the end of the day, we all came back together for one final challenge — a “Rock-Paper-Scissors” tournament. Who would have known that Yours Truly had any talent with that game? I was shocked to find myself the Grand [rock-paper-scissors] Master of P.K. Elementary School!
What a fun and powerful way to bond with teammates and start the new school year!