Friday, July 13, 2012

Saku-Taku-No-Ki, or the Chicken and the Egg

openclipart by Gerald_G
I’ve been reading a book by renowned children’s author Jane Yolen, and she mentions this expression in Japanese:

Saku—the special sound a mother hen makes tapping on an egg with her beak.

Taku—the sound a chick makes tapping from within.
 No-ki—the moment the tappings come together.

"Saku-taku-no-ki—the instant a chick pecking on the inside and a mother pecking on the outside reach the same spot. The egg cracks open. New life begins."

Yolen is referring to the process of story creation, but I think about this (as I think about practically everything else) in terms of teaching.  

It reminds me of that classic moment in The Miracle Worker when Helen Keller connects the feeling of wetness on her hand with the sign for “water.”  

Or those times in my own classes when it feels like nothing’s getting through, like I’m just beating my head against a wall, but then something finally, magically clicks. 
related posts:

When the Teacher is Ready, the Student Appears

The Importance of Mindful Teachers (interview)

You might also be interested in teaching materials connected to Jane Yolen's books: 

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