During an emotional discussion following a challenge attempted three times by Harness the Stars Kids Opera Company, Rayn stated, “We didn’t fail, we just didn’t finish.” If we could all adopt this philosophy concerning failure and making mistakes, our world would be different.
In determining the theme for the opera, we must ascertain what students care about deeply, what really matters to them. What worries you? What makes you angry? What frustrates you? What makes you sad? What scares you? What brings you great joy? By asking these questions, we got a closer look into the deep thoughts and feelings of individual children. As students shared their personal stories, a common theme emerged. Failure.
“Failing a test makes me angry.”
“I’m worried that we won’t accomplish the opera.”
“My work frustrates me and I say, I QUIT!”
“The challenges in life worry me.”
“Failing frustrates me.”
“What really frustrates me is when I make a mistake and I complain about it.”
“I get angry when someone makes fun of me when I make a mistake.”
“I get sad when I keep doing something wrong, over and over again.”
“Hard work frustrates me.”
Since day one of school, when Parker presented his powerful metaphor of life not being easy, of life being “no digital clock”, this idea of making mistakes and falling short has echoed throughout our days, making us aware that if we wish to achieve our hopes and dreams, we must embrace setbacks and obstacles as learning experiences.