In 1999, Kevin Costner played Billy Chapel, a washed up pitcher for the Detroit Tigers who reminisces about his career while pitching his last game. The movie title was, "For Love of the Game."
During a tour of Menlo Innovations in Ann Arbor today, I found myself twisting that movie title from "For Love of the Game" into "For Love of Learning." At one point our host said something like, "if a student escapes 8th grade with a love of learning and ability to read, he or she can catch up and excel in virtually anything they want to do." Those words hung with me throughout the rest of our visit, "if a student has a love of learning and the ability to read, he or she can excel in anything!
At Menlo the employees work with partners, not the same partner every week or even every day. They are a part of a TEAM and they have a love for what they do. As we continuously ask ourselves "why" we do what we do in education, some part of that answer must include instilling a love of learning in our students.