Lately we have been talking a lot about invitations at Rowanberry School. One day recently I sat down with my notebook and documented each time I heard an invitation extended from one person to another, or to a group of people. I stopped writing after 12. What amazed me were how many different forms an invitation can take.
“Will someone come and play with me?”
“Cora, there’s a seat open next to me!”
(In the context of imaginative play) “Sister…come back here!”
The more I listen for invitations, the more I notice them all around me. Today I heard an invitation from two children to a group of three other children:
“You guys have orange on your shoes so you are welcome to be on our team…the Tiger Team!”
In another context, such as other children wanting to play but having no orange on their shoes, this could have been considered an exclusion. But in this context, a child wanting to connect with others and finding a creative way to do it, it was understood as the genuine invitation that it was.