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Love and Education

Recently, I got together with a friend that had moved from my community to a neighborhood that is quite diverse and has great needs. I had to ask her, what was it that called her and her husband to this area, away from the small town, rural life? She was passionate when she answered- it was love. She and her husband wanted an opportunity to love on people that needed it. Love is the center of her universe and she wanted to share it with others, digging deep within herself to give the very best of what she has to improve the lives of other people. The world is not full of people like this, and things like the pandemic have caused us to draw away from each other and left deficits in the fabric of our lives. My friend’s end goal was to mend these holes and lift up every single person she encountered, and I left her that night pondering her joy and selflessness and what that looked like in my life.

Learning Designs has always been about patching those holes in the lives of every student we meet. This post-pandemic world my friend has dedicated herself to changing is the same isolated, hole filled world that we all are living in. Our children are innocent victims of this new reality, and I think any educator out there could tell you stories of the ways our kids are struggling to navigate it. I got a call from a news reporter asking what the pandemic meant for Learning Designs and the students we work with. Quite honestly, the gaps are profound. Not just academically, but in the way students are connected and perceive themselves. The shift doesn’t make sense to them. They can’t place their finger on why, but school and learning are not as rewarding and natural as they once were. They don’t understand that the challenges are rooted deep and the school system is struggling.

Love fits into this situation, and our situation at Learning Designs, perfectly- and I’ll tell you why. As educators now we are told that we are supposed to endorse relationships before rigor with our students. This is not a new principle for us at Learning Designs, in fact it is the very premise that makes one on one academic coaching so powerful. Our catchphrase, “Unleash your academic superpowers” is the very end goal for our students, and no one can even see that goal without the kind of coaching that makes them believe it is possible. We love what we do, we love learning, and we love the kind of connections we make with the students we work with that often endures for a lifetime. Connection and love is at the very heart of each tutor-student relationship. Without it, learning can’t happen. Love is so very important to learning, and every single person that works for us at Learning Designs embodies that. We love what we do, and more importantly, who we do it for.

We hand pick every single person that works as an academic coach at Learning Designs to maintain the right culture. The first thing we look for is passion; passion for helping students unleash their academic superpowers, passion for relationships that inspire learning, passion for knowledge and passion for success. In a world where the gaps have grown wider, educators are overburdened and students feel like the task is too large, our passions help drive what we do, and that fire is bright. I am glad I got a chance to see what my friend committed her life to, because witnessing her loving and doing reinforced my belief that at Learning Designs we are fulfilling our mission and making a difference in the lives of every student we encounter.

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