Wait for it…
No seriously, keep waiting.
Because wait time is your best friend.
And that’s truth #2 of the “Three Post-Short-Practicum Truths I Learned About Education!”
I’ve mentioned previously the value of silence in the classroom. I experienced it firsthand again though, this time as a participant during a Bible study. The Sunday School teacher had introduced a passage, briefly analyzed the verses and then asked us how we understood it, boldly saying, “I’m not afraid of silence, people.” Indeed he sat and waited for a full minute and a half, and if you’ve ever led a group in any sort of discussion you’ll know that anything over ten seconds of waiting already feels rather awkward. Gradually though the crowd began to speak up, with high school students contributing their thoughts as much as the college students and the young career crew who were present. The teacher’s attitude reminded me strongly of my English school advisor, who so wisely said to me:
Wait time is your best friend.
I believe her very much, too. I realize that the people around me allow me a lot of wait time; many of my close friends aren’t afraid of silence and this space allows both of us to think and contribute better to a fruitful conversation. Similarly the discussion leader this morning created an environment where we could understand our beliefs better and in a deeper manner. So there you go. Truth #2 for myself means realizing the value of wait time, and the result of realizing this “truth” encourages me to consciously practice wait time in both my personal conversation and the practical classroom. What do you think would happen with your own thought process if you took the time to chew thoughts over? What do you think would happen if there was a little more silence in your conversations?