Adventure, Discovery, Inspiration First!
We don't put safety first at Coyle Outside. That is said with trepidation as it seems our culture, especially around kids, increasingly values safety above all else sometimes. That leaves things like good judgement, relationship, trust, connection to come AFTER. What we see is that the world kids grow up in is increasingly sanitized of adversity and opportunities to experience failure/victory and to experience themselves as potential difference makers. We believe there is a distinction between discovery and 'learning' and that discovery changes a person forever. We believe that wisdom (as well as a beautiful, rich life) comes through failures, taking risks and from entering and passing through what is scary and uncomfortable.
Making a Difference connects us
Adversity is a prerequisite for Wisdom and Common Sense
Consider the saying "We can't have our cake and eat it too". If one wants inspiration we believe they pay for it in safety or comfort or familiarity. We want our students to discover the power of distinguishing for themselves the costs and benefits of choosing to follow prescribed rules and policies versus developing and using their innate humanity.
We want to work with families who want to take chances and stretch themselves. We are more interested in the power that comes from making a difference in the world than what comes from pursuing one's bliss. More interested in developing people who are capable of making sacrifices in the near term that pay off in the long term. We want for students to leave our programs feeling like they had to generate some courage and that they pushed themselves to do something that would not have happened on its own. And we want them to leave with stories to tell.
Finally, we try to remember that we are not here to create epiphanies. These sometimes happen of course and most of the time we don't even know. A child goes home with a new idea of what they want to do with their life without ever us having a hint that this happened. But we ARE here dedicatedly to influence the course our students take. We aspire to move the dial on their compass one degree so that in 10, 20, 30 years they end up in a much different and bigger place. We do this through modeling respect, hard work and curiosity and by providing the feedback and connection that we know students can use.