If I asked myself one of my favorite questions to ask other teachers – If you had one period to teach one lesson to one class, what lesson would it be? – I'd answer "immerse."
It's arguably the most important lesson we can learn and teach. So much so, that it's the primary purpose of this website. What we read, listen to and watch is vital to our happiness and success. Where we place ourselves and with whom we spend our time is the primary determinant of the quality of our lives.
But we have to work for it. Unless we're born into extraordinarily fortunate circumstances, we won't be be magically immersed in quality. We have to go look for it.
Recently, I did. It was far from easy, but with help and luck, I managed to put together a multi-age group that traveled with me to Matagalpa, Nicaragua.
For ten days, I was surrounded by fabulous people, ages 15 to 58, as we worked hard and searched for ways to improve a tiny sliver of the world. Our overall impact on the rural school and community of El Progreso was slight yet significant.
The group's effect on me was transcending. I'm better because of them, and I bet they are, too.