This article makes a simple, but excellent, point about the importance of perfecting groundwork before taking on additional tasks. The author uses the skill of cooking rice as a metaphor for the skill of knowing business basics; however, the comparison also works in matters of education. In the classroom, those first few weeks of school should be dedicated to the daily basics..."making the rice." Teachers should deliberately and frequently set aside time, for explaining rules, communicating objectives, and building trusting relationships with students. Too often, we teachers don't want to waste any valuable instruction time, so by day two, we frantically hand out the syllabus, assign the chapters, and begin checking off the academic standards. Why? Because all this makes us feel as though we are being efficient, accountable and productive. On the other hand, if we dedicated more time to creating effective classroom communities, we might discover that we don't have to stop as often during the school year to remind or to lecture about expectations or behaviors. Eureka! More learning could take place.
Yes, rice is an everyday, perhaps even overlooked, simple pleasure.
However, if not prepared reasonably well, it can ruin a perfectly good meal.
Note to self: before you move along with your grand plans,
take time to make the rice.