Blog of Knowledge

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5 Lessons TOK Has Taught Me in 3 Days

By Ellen Ritchie

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Hi, I’m Ellen, I don’t work here. I’m a university student who has been on work experience at Tree of Knowledge, mostly observing primary school workshops. A lesson a day keeps the brain at play I suppose, and I’ve learnt 5 in 3 days here at TOK!

 

 1. Let your creative juices flow

 

When was the last time you finger painted on the walls? Or made a funky new moustache and hairstyle out of bath bubbles? You probably can’t remember. Since when did mess mean failure? When was the last time you just made a COMPLETE MESS!? I’m not advising that you start splattering paint on the walls of your office (that might not go down well with the boss) but allow yourself to be messy in your own space with your own passions. The coolest drawings aren’t the ones that look the most realistic, they are the ones that have the wackiest ideas (just look at Dali!). Make mistakes, get messy, colour outside the lines. Grab your brushes, guitars or just yourself and let those creative juices flow!

 

2. Optimism is key

 

As Roald Dahl puts it “A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly.” How true! Watching some of the workshops, Tree of Knowledge has made me reflect on lessons that are important for all ages. Most importantly, see the opportunity in the challenge. Turn that frown upside down! At TOK a skipping rope becomes a maze, a bike tire becomes a game, a bamboo stick becomes a lesson in patience. A little challenge never hurt anybody!

 

3. Take a breather

 

Important for 9-year-olds but important for all. Sometimes you have to listen to that little voice that says “maybe not”. Next time I think about complaining about the price of my textbooks, maybe I should listen to that voice and say no to the overpriced pint at the pub. Nobody is perfect though, I’m not making any promises. But, it is important to take care of yourself enough to say no. Take a step back and ask yourself how you feel… how are your actions making you feel?

 

4. You are allowed to be excited!

 

The excited squeals that I heard from a class as one of the speakers whipped out a jar of lollies really made me think when was the last time I was THAT excited about something? As adults, we move on to be worried about different things; jobs, money, friends. Let’s try not to leave the things that make us excited behind. Whether that be your weekly Friday chipper or your greatest passion, listen to that “yes” voice as well. Have a little excited boogie around your house, you are allowed to!

 

5. There is always something to learn

 

We all know that person who is a walking encyclopaedia. That could be you! In three days at TOK, I have learnt that sticky notes were a mistake, I have learnt all about the chimp paradox, I have learnt that you can do an awful lot with a polo and a bit of string. Imagine what you could learn in a year! A fact a day, and you could be a 365-page book. Maybe you could even try to learn something new about yourself today.

 

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