May 14, 2021

Turning a Space into a Place: How to Create Your Most Productive Environment

Turning a Space into a Place: How to Create Your Most Productive Environment

Imagine working and learning where you feel safe, comfortable, and inspired. Having the freedom, the insight, and the courage to design a place to do your best learning and work. A place, where you will lose track of time, dive deeper into your task with no desire to make excuses to avoid your work.

In this episode, Terri speaks with Mariaemma Pellulo-Willis, co-author of the book Discover Your Child's Learning Style and co-founder of the Learning Success Institute.  They talk about the power traits assessment and their focus is on environment. They discuss how one can turn a space into a place that fits your personality, gives you a sense of connection, and a good vibe that helps you do your best work.

Power Traits Assessment (discount link)

Resources Mentioned In the Podcast!
Discover Your Child’s Learning Style
Self-Portrait™ Power Traits Assessment


Learning Doesn’t Have to Hurt: The Magic of Relationship in Teaching & Learning

What To Do When They Don’t Get It: Simple Techniques That Work Like Magic


How to Contact Mariaemma: 


If humans are naturally drawn to learning, why doesn't everyone enjoy school? If everyone has unique gifts and talents, why do some people feel dumb, depressed, and insignificant? If you want something different, you need to do something different. Welcome to the element is everything podcast where we discuss real-world experiences, research and strategies around finding your element, what it is, how to do it, and how to support others in developing it. Please welcome your host with over 30 years of experience in public education and independent learning Terry Novacek.

Terri Novacek  0:49  
Imagine working and learning where you feel safe, comfortable and inspired. Having the freedom, the insight, and the courage to design a place to do your best learning and work. Where you will lose track of time, dive deeper into your task with no desire to make excuses to avoid your work. Trish Ruppel introduced the five aspects of the Power Traits Assessment a couple of weeks ago. Today we have the pleasure of hearing from one of the authors to focus on just one aspect. environment. How can one turn a space a location into a place that fits your personality gives you a sense of connection, a good vibe that helps you do your best work?  There's a lot of talk about choice and how to learn, but where to learn is equally as important and oftentimes disregarded. When parents are surveyed on why they send their children to the schools they do the most common answer close to home. Very few take into consideration the philosophy or culture of the school, or take note of the environment beyond maybe something like the amount of graffiti and trash. We just assumed school is the best learning environment for our children. After all, it's a school right? And don't all schools do the research and know all the science behind learning and pedagogy to design the ideal learning environment for students? Well, the reality is only some do. Even today, there are still schools doing what they've done for decades, simply because that's the way they've always done it. It's like the boiling frog syndrome. You get comfy and complacent and by the time you realize you need to make a change, you can't get out. People of all ages have recognized in the last year that the water in their work and learning environments was getting hot. While routine can be healthy, too much can lead to a rut and leave us unable to respond to change for our own good. Preparation for learning begins in the home regardless of where school is. With digital technology providing increased access to content and resources, learning is no longer confined to classroom space and schedule. And with technology reducing the number of jobs that rely on passive participation, passive learners are no longer prepared to navigate the New World. Active learners need active environments to develop multiple skills like listening, analyzing and explaining. And they need social interaction to debate, discuss and present information. Both the home and the school environments must serve as a catalyst for learning, not an inhibitor.  Makerspace is all the rage right now. And while it is a nice space where students can explore, design, create and build, it isn't ideal for every student. Hybrid learning and work grew in popularity during COVID and many found it to be a better fit for them. But some did not. Research in psychology confirms that Dr. Maria Montessori was spot on about how order is helpful to learning and development, which is why Montessori schools everywhere offer very ordered environments. However, Montessori education is not for everyone. Rudolf Steiner, who developed Waldorf education, again an educational philosophy with scientific backing, believed in a sensory-rich environment. With play based activities to encourage the young child to investigate the natural world, explore social relationships, and expand their imaginative capacities, where children can find the joy in learning and experience the richness of unhurried and creative learning rather than early specialized academics. Well, that just sounds so grand to some. Again, Waldorf is not for everyone.

Terri Novacek  5:32  
The bottom line, humans are not robots. And while we are social beings, we are very much individuals with different strengths, likes, dislikes, and emotions. Let's just say were a bit complicated. And that is why any school that says they can meet every child's needs is just kidding themselves. And that is why charter schools are a good thing. So that there are options available to meet the needs and demand of a wide array of learners. So speaking of charter schools, the charter schools of Element Education have enjoyed a relationship with the authors of the book, Discover Your Child's Learning Style, and the founders of the Learning Success Institute since 2002, Mariaemma Willis, and Victoria Kendall Hudson, this dynamite duo began to work together in the late 80s, and developed the power traits assessment. While the original assessment was on paper, for obvious reasons, it is now offered online and provides a deep understanding into the aspects of your personality that make you unique, make you who you are. What can one do with that information? Well, you can learn how to get along with others, you can feel good about yourself by knowing and celebrating your strengths. You can learn better, you can plan your life better, choose a better partner, choose your work better. Mariemma and Victoria have written a plethora of resources supporting personalized learning in the last couple of decades. And the Learning Success Institute continues to offer coaching and parenting and education. So let's see what Mariaemma has to say about turning a space into a place. Thanks, thank you so much for your time. Today, I'm so excited to talk to you about the power traits assessment, and especially that section around the environment. And I think that is probably my top five things that I like about this assessment is that it does include the environment, I just, I feel like that is so important. And it gets overlooked so often.

First of all, thank you, Terri, for having me very excited to be here. Definitely, the environment is very important. And it's so taken for granted, rarely even talked about. So, in our assessment, that part, there are five parts we look at disposition, modality, interests, talents, and then the environment. And in the environment section, we check on sound, body position, temperature, food, color, time, like time of day, the lighting, and even interaction, like how many people are in the room? Or are you by yourself or working with somebody else, that kind of thing. So even though it's taken for granted, it can be very powerful, and sometimes just a little thing can make a big difference. I remember one time a parent called to ask me some questions and said that she had that her child had taken the Self Portrait. And in the environment section in the color. She found out that she hated the color white. You know, I mean, it doesn't say what color do you hate, but like your asks for your favorite color and your least favorite color? And so her mother said, Oh my gosh, I mean, like she knew, you know, you usually know like what colors your kids like or don't like, right? But she had never thought of it in terms of like for learning, applying that information for learning. And she said, so she would do her homework on this table, that was a white table. And she's just took forever and squirmed around and blah, blah, blah, you know and just never got her stuff done. And so, right away That just sort of a light bulb went off. And she thought, Oh my gosh, let's try changing. And she put her favorite color, like a cloth on it, that was her favorite color. And all of a sudden, it was fine. And she was like, just doing her homework and she wasn't squirming.

Terri Novacek  10:19  

It's not always that simple. But I'm using that as an example to show that it actually can be sometimes just a little change will make a huge difference.

Terri Novacek  10:34  
Well, I think of, you know, school districts that spend tons of money, you know, trying to understand the science behind color, and they find out, you know, blue, or tan will keep the kids mellow, and use the primary colors for this grade and all of that and while the science may support that, for a majority of the students, it doesn't mean everybody's going to respond that way to it, and others can have the opposite.

Unknown Speaker  11:08  
Right? And so there are general things about color, you know, like, for example, pink. In fact, they remember when they used to talk about putting pink in jail cells because it calls Oh, that's right. You know, so there are some general things about some colors. Colors do affect your moods, obviously, some colors make you more depressed or sad in general, and some make you hyper and, you know, they say, if you have read in the dining room, people eat more those that kind of thing. So there are some general sort of rules about color. And yeah, like you said, there are also these individual preferences. So somebody might love orange, and somebody else might just like, I have a hard time with certain orangey colors, like remember when all carpets were that orange shag. And it was like, Oh my gosh,

Terri Novacek  12:12  
Avocado green.

Right. And for some people, it wouldn't make any difference. Like it didn't like those colors. But I could still sit there and do my work, whether it was schoolwork or whatever kind of work. But for some people, color makes a huge difference. Just like all of the other things about environment, for one person sound might not be a big deal, you could be by yourself and have it totally quiet. Or there can be lots of people in the room talking, it wouldn't matter at all. And you can still do your stuff. And for somebody else, again, it would make a huge difference. So these are the kinds of things that we want to find out not just for the instructor or the parent to know about before that student, himself or herself to become more aware of what things work for them and what things make them more effective. Right, so that the color, you can't just paint, you know, what are you going to do paint the classroom and stripes so that or at home, you can't do that either. But if if someone is really affected by color, if they have their own room, of course, that's something that you can do, they can paint it or you can always paint either because you might be renting. So a little rug in that color, or the bedspread can be the color if you're in your bedroom, or even just pens, notebooks, things like that, a cloth over the table or the desk that makes it be more inviting. The idea is that whatever puts you in a more positive frame of mind and keeps you focused will help you to study and learn better.

Terri Novacek  14:03  
Sure. Well, like you said that self-awareness, you know, when I think you mentioned noise in there. So there's some that need quiet and then there's some that like the background noise. I'm one that the answer is it depends. There are some things I'm working on that I actually can focus better when I've got the background noise. And then there are other things if I had background noise, I wouldn't be able to get through it. 

So right and that is the case for a lot of people and music is another type of sound. Some people do great with music, and the type of music too. So if it's a like, if I'm writing something, you know, writing an article or working I mean doing real work for my work. I can't have like real fast-paced music, whether it's classical or any other kind, it's like, it just makes me all jittery, and I can concentrate. But if I'm vacuuming or something like that, then that high energizing music helps me to just get going and you know, get that type of work done. So again, it's very much about self-awareness. And we as the coaches, parents, we call them coaches, parents and teachers coaching their kids, to learn more about themselves and what works for them. So in talking about sound, like you said, some people actually need noise. If it's too quiet, they can't concentrate. Silence itself is distracting. So that's something to know. And then the idea of having how many, how many people can be in the room, some people do better when they're totally alone. Others do better if they can work with someone else. And then there are people who not necessarily want to work with someone else, but they just feel better having other people in the room doing other things. You're not alone. And pets count for that, too. Sometimes having a pet next to them. It's just comforting, and it just helps them to focus and you know, get their work done.

Terri Novacek  16:31  
Yeah. You mentioned body position.


Terri Novacek  16:36  
And I know that the first thing that comes to mind for me when you talk about that is is learners that have been diagnosed with ADHD, and are told, sit still sit up straight, sit at this desk, stay there for the 90 minutes of this lesson, or whatever it is. What are your thoughts on that?

Yeah, so you don't have to have a diagnosis of ADHD or any event, there are people that sitting at a desk is not the best way for them to work. And so we've got lying on the floor, we've got beanbag chairs. For people that need a little movement there, the exercise balls. You know, they're selling those now for classrooms. There are a lot of classrooms that have them, I forgot what they have a, I think they have a particular name for the ones that are in the classrooms, but they're, some of them are even on wheels. So the kids sit on them, and are adults because adults get a lot of adults who need them to, and you know, they can just wiggle a little bit back and forth. There's just enough movement that keeps them busy to be able to sit there and focus. You can't always have kids sit on the floor. But again, why not in the classroom, you could at home, certainly if they're doing school at home, you can. But I know a lot of teachers that have different little sections in the classrooms. They're not with a rug over there or a sofa, even so that kids have different ways of sitting or lying down. And the other one is standing up. So if you have tall tables, this is a big deal, now, even in the adult world, if you, you know, go on, if you google desks or something, all of those for changing positions, some of them do it automatically so that you can even change positions during the day you can sit down stand up. But a lot of students do much better if they have a tall table where they can just stand up and do their work,. 

Terri Novacek  19:01  
Right, well, and that's really gained a lot of popularity with all the zoom meetings that people have had, you know, you're not getting up and changing rooms for a class or going to a building for a meeting. And so you are you're just in one position all day. 

Right? Right. Not good for anybody really. Yeah, so and then some people they actually need to move around, they need to walk around, I mean, not continually. But they need that time. You know that all those little stories about the kids who continually sharpen their pencils. They need to move so that's the only legitimate way and of course, eventually a teacher says you've already sharpened it 20 times you can't get up anymore. But that's their way of trying to get up and move. So if you can and again,  if the kids understand about learning styles, strengths, power trades, whatever you want to call them. If a class understands we're all different, we need different things they won't even notice. So somebody can get up and just move around quietly, and don't have to be making noise. But if you give permission for kids to do that, you'll get, you know, a lot better and more effectiveness from them.

Terri Novacek  20:29  
Right? Well, and I know, you're something that comes up a lot, whenever we're talking about the learning styles is that this is to help you have awareness of your strengths as a learner. But it doesn't mean that it can be an excuse for not doing something, you know. So if you don't like blue, and you're in a blue classroom, it doesn't mean you don't have to do anything, because the classroom is blue. It's like you said, you know, you make decisions, be aware of it. But also, you know, I mean, there is the real world out there. And there are going to be times where you need to sit, or you need to be in a room, that's a color that you don't like, or if there's going to be sounds that don't work for you. What I like is that this, there's the awareness, but then there's the self-advocacy, as well. Being able to, you know, be in a room and know, okay, I can't keep sharpening my pencil, but I can't focus, what else could I do? And in recognizing it's not appropriate for me to do anything that's going to mess up the environment for everybody else, why don't I talk to the teacher about this, and we can come to an agreement.

Right, definitely. So there's that aspect or even at work, you know, once you're an adult, that you would talk about those things. So there's sort of a two sides to it. Let me talk to somebody, maybe I can wear your, you know, your plugs, or listen to my lesson with earphones, or, you know or sit in that corner over there. Because I need to be away, maybe even have a little some, some classrooms have some carols, you know, the little sort of like a little study carol.

Terri Novacek  22:27  
study Carol. Yeah.

Unknown Speaker  22:28  
Study carols  so they can't see anything. So all that is good stuff. And it can be applied on the job too, in your office, or some of those places that are all open, you know, just with the little dividers, that you can set something up for yourself. Talk to your boss, or, or whoever. So if it's too noisy, and you're at work, and you need to concentrate, you can do your own thing of using your own your plugs or your or noise-canceling earphones or something like that. The room is blue, you can't stand it, okay, put a picture frame and a plant in front of it. So it's talking about it and seeing what you might be able to change. But on the other hand, if you can't change much, or can't change anything, then what can you do for yourself? Can you wear your favorite color to offset the, you know, color on the wall? Can you put a picture there so that it hides more of that color that you don't like those kinds of things? So you see, there are the two aspects to it.

Terri Novacek  23:41  
Right? Yeah.

Unknown Speaker  23:42  
Advocating for yourself by asking, and at the same time, having strategies for yourself when things can't be changed as much as you might like them to.

Terri Novacek  23:57  
Now switching gears just a little bit on environment. What are your thoughts that you have as far as creating a sensory-rich environment that encourages exploration and creativity?

Hmm, well, certainly having different centers mean that's not a new idea. Having different ways of learning so again, if this is a classroom, I'm where they've talked about these kinds of things. There are different ways of learning. So we have this station over here with headphones. We have these areas over here with just lots of books. Depending on the grade or what class it is, you know, maybe it's a math class in junior high. You might have manipulatives for the kinesthetic people, of some some students This is this goes into modality a little bit, but it's also environment. If you have, if you can, for example, bounce a ball when you're memorizing something. So some kind of movement, or maybe there's a little jogger in the corner, that maybe not for the younger kids, we don't want anybody to get hurt, but you know, just talking about those little trampoline. So some kids would really get a lot out of being able to go there, and, you know, jump up and down a little bit or use that movement, actually, while they are learning something, memorizing something especially. So does that answer. 

Terri Novacek  25:48  
It does, it does. And as an extension to that, the idea that, you know, learning does not just happen in the classroom, as a parent, what are some things I can do in my home. I mean, obviously, if I'm homeschooling, this is going to be, you know, at the forefront of my mind, but but even if I'm not homeschooling, I want to have a rich environment, for my child to have access to things and feel comfortable and, and engage in learning on their own. Without being told, you know, this is the learning space. And this is the learning time.

Yeah, so of course, having space would be great. A space that's for that student, that again, the space would have to be whatever works best for that student. So maybe there's not a desk there, maybe it is a beanbag chair, or maybe you have file boxes are something that they can keep their stuff in. So another way of being, you know, rich environment is to have the, you know, crayons, colored pencils, markers, whiteboard, all of those kinds of things, so that they can go back and forth, or eventually choose their favorite way of learning whiteboards. And markers can be magical. kids that don't want to write on a, you know, piece of paper. Well, right, or practice, spelling or whatever on a whiteboard is just more fun. Even magnetic letters, I don't know if you've ever worked with kids will spell with magnetic letters. They, it's like helping them to. Okay, so let's say spelling is difficult to begin with. So if they also have to write it, now they've got to think about two things, writing letters, and how do you spell the word that if you take the writing out of it and use magnetic letters, now they can just focus on, you know, the sounds? And how do you spell the word. So you took out one of the pieces that might make it even harder for them to get through that lesson. So these are all ways that again, at home, I would really have bouncy balls or those exercise balls around for them to sit on. If it's that kind of student. Having a jogger in the little trampoline in the corner, again, is wonderful, because even if they're not using it for their actual learning, they can take movement breaks. For some kids movement breaks are just totally important. And so part of the environment can be the use of timers, whether it's an actual timer that sits on the you know, the desk or the computer or the watch whatever times you and you know, there's a ringing, that that happens. So they can time themselves. I'm going to work 10 minutes, take a five-minute break or a 10-minute break. It depends on the age of the child, how unfocused or focused they are. But it works really well because now they know it's not forever. They know like, if they're working on something and you just say, okay, work there till you're finished. Their mind starts to go all over. It's like, when will I be done? When can I do this? when can they do that? But if they know Oh, there's a timer, I'm just going to work until the rings, and then it rings. They have like a boundary there.  You know schedule around the thing of the framework. And so it rings and then they go Okay, I get my five minute or 10 minute break whatever it is, they can go jump up and down. They can go outside and throw ball in, you know, in a basketball hoop or whatever they're going to do. To get that movement break. It might just be Going into the kitchen and getting some water, it might just be that or a snack. So they set the timer for their break, when that's over, they go back in, set it again. And for older kids, even high school or college whoever adults doing work at home, when you do that, you always have an option. Let's say you set it for 30 minutes. And after 30 minutes, it goes off. And you think, Oh, that one fast, I can probably work 15 more minutes, you can make that decision. And they end up doing that. Because they just know that they're in control, and they do get breaks. And it's coming. And it's not this open-ended thing, like I'm going to be here for hours and hours during this work. And they don't have that time sense. See, but now they're gonna end up working a little more and a little more, a little more, sometimes, maybe not always, but they get to have that on their own self discipline about it. And it just is, you know, really magical.

Terri Novacek  31:11  
Right? Yeah, well, so you mentioned control. I, when I met you, and Victoria all those years ago, nearly 20 years. A game changer for me in, in the education of my kids, was your idea about take the pressure off. And I know it doesn't fit in that environment category. But it does. Because that is part of your environment is the pressure that you're feeling. 

When you whenever you allow a student to do anything, whether it's in the environment section, the intersect or whatever, you know, whatever category it's in, whenever they can do something that works better for them, it's taking the pressure off. So that's sort of like in the background all the time, it's one of the foundation pieces of taking the pressure off. So you're not filled with anxiety all the time worried afraid or upset or sad or angry. You just know, this is a better way for me to work and it's working. And that definitely takes the pressure off.

Terri Novacek  32:26  
And just having you know, you mentioned control, you know, being able to control it. And I've just seen so many kids that if you gave them worksheets or a workbook, they would be the chronic pencil sharpener. But you can leave workbooks around, you know, just on tables, and bookshelves and stuff and they'll go over on their own, come up and start working through them. You know, you might sit them down for a reading lesson. And it's like pulling teeth. But again, you give them the time and space and they'll pull a book off and start trying to work through it on their own.

Yes. And extending from that, again, springing modality in a little bit, but also environment, having different ways of bringing in the information like videos, movies, graphics, not just reading, not just listening. But of course, audio books is another way if they are listening learners. So that's it's all part of that enriched environment of different ways of getting the information.

Terri Novacek  33:47  
Right. Well, yeah, and then if you can set it up in a way that the child has access to it, so they're not having to do it on your timeframe.

Right, definitely.

Terri Novacek  34:01  
I feel like we missed one of the sections of environment

There's lighting. Lighting is can be very important too. For some people. fluorescent lights are deadly. Yeah, literally. They actually you cannot put fluorescent lights over plants because they actually die. So that's why you get when you go to a nursery. They have those things called roll lights. They're full spectrum lighting. You have to put that over a plant if you've got you know that kind of a setup where you need the lights. Because if you put fluorescent lights, it's just part of the spectrum and they die. It's not natural light. But we use it all over the place for people. And a lot of studies have been done about this. Kids get more kids get less sick or less often get sick less often in classrooms, when you have full spectrum lighting, so you can actually get full spectrum lighting, if you've got at home or in a classroom, you know, the fluorescent light setup, you can get the tubes that are full spectrum. And it's a whole different color. It doesn't have that yellow cast, you know, that you get. But it they do affect again, not every single person. But a lot of students are affected by fluorescent lighting, their eyes get blurry or watery, they get headaches sometimes and actually even get sick more often.

Terri Novacek  35:44  
Yeah, I have I've heard of students that get even get like gastrointestinal issues.

It can make them hyper even to have that. So that's one kind of lighting, if you have artificial lighting, to, you know, try to have the full spectrum instead of the regular fluorescent. But then there's also a window, you know, lights, like natural light from outside. And some people do much better with that. And I know that some teachers Look at that. And they make a point of having students who really do better with the natural light to move them more where the wind next to the windows, right, they get that. So that's lighting we do you have food, it does take calories to learn. And some some people really kind of need snacks, of course, we're talking about good snacks, not like Twinkies or something. Apple or nuts, things like that. To have those at home, that's probably easier. But even in classrooms, I know teachers that allow kids to have their little snack bags, you know, at their desk and be able to kind of graze if they need that. And you know, one thing about this is that sometimes teachers and parents say, Well, if I do it for one kid, I have do for everybody, well, first of all, so what if it works? So the words, everybody do it? On the other hand, not everybody's gonna want it, they just don't. If, if it, I don't care about snacks when I'm learning or working, so I'm not gonna go, Oh, you get to have a snack and I don't, I'm not even gonna pay attention. And the same goes for all these other things. I don't want to sit on a ball that moves. So I'm not gonna I'm not gonna care about it.

Terri Novacek  37:45  
Right? Well, and the novelty at first, you might find everybody wants carrot sticks to munch on and everybody wants the round ball. And then they get over, it may say, No, it's not for me, right?

They might want to try to see and that's okay, too, because they might discover something. But it again, the more you're talking in your group class or home about people are different. And we want to honor everybody as much as we can listen to everybody and their needs, then the students really love it really, they're much better than adults. About this about and then they start saying like, Oh, yeah, he needs headphones, but I'm okay with that. Um, but I need this. It's just matter of fact, it's just, you know, it's just the way we are. The last one is temperature. And again, you can't always do anything about the temperature. But just to be aware, like, if I'm too cold, there's concentrated right really cold, I much better if I'm really hot. I don't like it. But it's not like when I'm super cold and I just can't concentrate with where other people prefer being cold and so on. So we can always do something about it. But just to even understand if your classroom you know if the air conditioner broke. Just to understand there are going to be some people that are going to have a really hard time with that or if it's freezing all the time. Maybe have a couple extra sweaters or something for kids that get cold that kind of thing. And again, self awareness. I get cold easily. I need an extra sweatshirt or something.

Terri Novacek  39:34  
So I understand that you have written some ebooks. Can you tell me a little bit about them? Titles and Content. 

Unknown Speaker  39:45  
Sure. One of them is called Learning Doesn't Have to Hurt: The Magic of Relationship in Teaching and Learning and some of the topics there are how parents and teachers can become success coaches for their students. Disability versus strength focus. We want to capitalize on their strengths rather than you. You can't do this, you can't do that you're not good at this. You're not good at that. And it's not about what's wrong with them. We want to find out what's right. You know, what are your strengths? What can you do? Relieving Homework Stress, I do talk about lighting, sound and colors. The importance of safety being the number one need for learning real learning to take place and safety means, you know, not just that somebody isn't going to punch me in the face. It means that I'm not afraid to do my schoolwork. I don't feel like I'm too stupid to do it. I'm, nobody's gonna scold me if I don't understand this. So it's the safety and learning.

Terri Novacek  40:54  
Oh, that's great. Yeah, I trust the person, you know, the teacher, my classmates that Yeah,

yeah. Right. And, and celebrating our children and ourselves. So those are some of the topics there. The other one is What to Do When They Don't Get It: Simple Teaching Techniques That Work Like Magic. And in this one, I have a whole section on reading and spelling, and how to teach it to students who have difficulty with that, a whole section on comprehension and written expression, another one on math and memory. And then I also talked about the idea of learning disabilities, dyslexia, what does that really mean? And is it just a matter of looking at people's strengths? You know, and changing our mindset about that?

Terri Novacek  41:47  
Right, disabilities versus differences?

Yes, yes,

Terri Novacek  41:51  
I agree. All right. Well, thank you very much.

Hey, thanks so much, Terry.

Terri Novacek  41:58  
We all know you don't have to be a gardening expert, to know that when a plant is not doing well, you need to change something in the environment. It's the same for humans. A link to the power traits assessment can be found in our show notes. And when you access it through our site, you receive a discount. Consider having multiple members of the household or workplace complete it. It's a valuable tool for not only knowing yourself, but understanding others as well for better parenting, communication, relationships and learning. You can find the other resources Mariaemma mentioned on her website at Family families enrolled in element schools have access to all these resources for free through their Educational Facilitator. Take time this week to evaluate your environment, where you live, where you work, where you learn. Consider the colors, the furniture, the lighting, the sound, and even the temperature. In what ways can you turn the space into your own place, a place to operate in your element?