I recently went skiing for the first time in three years. To say I was scared was an understatement. Even on a good day I am a below average skier. My main mode is snowplowing back and forth on the run, first, not to fall and second, the need to have complete control.
So, on the third run, my husband, said “Come over here, there is a little hill at first, but the rest is fine. You can do it.” I carefully maneuvered down the hill as I had no choice, I had to finish regardless if I liked it, for I wasn’t going to take off my skis and walk, I did have some pride. Finally, down the hill, I looked at the ski map, and realized I had just completed a black diamond!
So much was going through my mind. If I had known before I went down the hill it was a black diamond, the entire time I would be freaking out thinking I am on a black diamond!” By not knowing, I concentrated on the moment and I did it!
This is exactly what we as educators have to instill within our classrooms. Push the students down ‘black diamonds.” We can’t tell our students how hard it is, we have to keep them in the moment and let them push themselves through the “run.” When they realize that it was a “black diamond,” it will be a turning point, what some of us call a “brain fake.” We fake the students into a new high.
This is sports psychology at its finest. Achievement and concentration will advance students to new heights. Believing in yourself and digging deep to finish, not allow a student to “take off their skis and walk,” but ski straight down. Once you have done it once, that is your new standard.
Now on to the “double black diamonds!”