Family, For Better or Worse (But Better)

by | Oct 29, 2020 | Blog

Dear Boundless Families:

The sun has gone AWOL. The November nip arrived mid-October. Approaching day fifty, the kids are about to break a record for the longest uninterrupted stay at Boundless. The dog days of November are upon us.

This means some drama in a group of teens who know each other all too well. The conflicts are very real, but ultimately they are over scraps. When push comes to shove, this group is proving they will hang together, in good times and petty times.

In other words, they are becoming a family. They are┬álearning to navigate conflict in ways that are stretching them. Sometimes into pretzels. It can be messy. But it’s honest.

We try in great earnest to teach kids to own their parts. To wait for the hissy fits to end before acting and speaking. To not become too cynical and throw their hands in the air.

While we do have some Associate Professors at the University of Victimhood among the gang, the poor-me sentiments are being eroded.

And the kids just carry on.

All were given a choice between making paddles or sewing sweaters. The sweaterers are devouring the task. Seth is halfway through his own stunning creation, but is too pumped up to wait for its completion before donning it. He proudly trods around without sleeves, a budding fashion designer with his 1970’s curly hair.

The english class can be heard 50 metres away, such is the vigour of their debates. They all are over it under the affable tutelage of their greenhorn English teacher Kyle, who is just nailing it, earning a starter’s role in the major leagues of literacy.

Science is curious, as in the subject matter itself. They have lost their teacher Ren, who has been sidelined four days now by our own Covid protocols until she gets her negative results back. So in steps Boundless Mike, teaching science on the fly. While the kids are pining for Ren’s return (hopefully any day now), Mike is leveraging a curriculum that is so mystifying that the kids can’t help but be engaged.

Fitness remains the slam dunk program of the season. Apparently, the group has adopted the “Beep Test”, a beguiling, strenuous, stress-inducing regime that has some kids gripped in its intensity. Inesh, normally a calm and steady sort of character, gets her warrior on when tangling with the beeps.

As I observe what’s going on around here from a detached perspective, I see a group of kids who are getting their self-importance eroded. This doesn’t happen overnight. But in their encounter with the little battles of life, they are growing leaps and bounds.

This defines resilience.

To me, one gal named Faith gets the resilience award this week. Hope got it last week. These names are literal – two strong young women here go by them – but together their monikers represent what this session is all about. And what every parent reading this has should feel about their kids.

Until next time.


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Steven Gottlieb
Steven Gottlieb