Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How Will They Learn About Teamwork???

One of the questions my mom is often asked goes something like this.
"If your kids aren't involved in organized sports, how are they ever going to learn about teamwork?"
Our family is actually not anti-organized sports. My mom loved sports as a child, baseball, soccer, you name it, she did it. When Benjamin and I were little, we both were in kiddie baseball and soccer. Then when Benjamin got a little older, he was in tae-kwon-do for about two years and really enjoyed it. However, as God gave more and more kids to our family, life became more complex. Suddenly, it was harder to cart everyone into a practice, and stay there for 60 minutes or so, and try to organize around naps, feeding, and things like that.  Eventually, we decided to pull out of the sports, and do other things with our lives. But when people ask my mom, "What sports are your kids part of?" they're expecting her to say basketball, soccer, baseball, or a combination of all three. Instead, she says, "Oh, they actually aren't part of any sports." *Insert audible gasp and jaw-drop.*
"They're not part of ANY sports? Not any AT ALL? How on earth are they going to learn about teamwork?" Well, there's an interesting answer to that question. When you have 7 or more people in a family, you have a ready-made team right there! Our family has 8 people, which means that we have the perfect team in our own house 24/7. We learn about teamwork on an hourly basis! It makes our family draw closer together as a unit (aka team) when we work well together, and when we don't work together...we fail as a team, too.

Case in point. My job after dinner is to do the dishes. Doing the dishes, in the Crosby household, means rinse all the plates, load 'em all, start the dishwasher, and clean the counters with soapy water. Plus, we have these teflon frying pans and kettles that can't go in the dishwasher, so if we've used those for dinner preparation, those need to be cleaned in the soapy water too. All in all, the job takes about a half an hour, give or take a few minutes. The next morning, Sarah unloads the dishwasher which is her morning job.  We need an empty dishwasher so that after breakfast, the whole team can put their breakfast plate in and we can do a quick wipe up and get on to school.  After lunch dishes, we load and run the dishwasher again and then it must be unloaded before dinner dishes.  When everyone does their part, things go smoothly. 

The other evening, I did my dishes job, but got a bit sidetracked and failed to actually start the dishwasher. Oh, I loaded the soap and everything, but I just forgot to actually turn the dial to ON.  No big deal really right?  Well, just a little missed play you might say, it only impacts me..not really, not when you are a team.  One person's action impacts others on a team. 

The next morning Sarah came out to unload the dishwasher and said, "Cady, you didn't start the dishwasher last night." Case closed, right? Uh, no. When breakfast time came around, we had fried eggs, resulting in 7 plates that needed to be loaded into the dishwasher. Alas, the dishwasher that was so badly needed was temporarily out of commission, as it was running at the time.
Here's what would usually happen after breakfast. The night before, dishes are loaded and the dishwasher is run. The next morning, Sarah comes out and unloads the dishwasher, resulting in it being empty for breakfast. After breakfast is completed, everyone clears their plates, I rinse and load them, and wipe the counters off. Benjamin and Sarah do the floor and table, and we all are on school work quickly. Nobody is in trouble or stressed out, and at lunchtime, nobody is  irritated with one another, because nobody is getting in another person's way.
Here's what happened after breakfast, the other day, when I fell down on my job. Because the dishwasher was running at an odd time and the schedule was off, the little ones were mixed up. They just finished eating and left the table. That is definitely NOT what they are supposed to do, because even when the littlest people don't work together with the rest of the team, things pile up on others. Since they didn't clear, they got in trouble and I needed to clear and rinse their plates. The big kids did their jobs, but the whole breakfast cleanup took a lot longer because instead of just being able to load the plates in the dishwasher, I had to try to nicely stack the plates up in the sink.
Because of that, all the dishes needed to be loaded in a somewhat orderly fashion in the sink. Unfortunately, our sink is made in a truly stupid fashion, having one side be relatively large, and the other side quite tiny. So it really just doesn't work to try to 'stack plates in an orderly fashion.' That just isn't going to work. Of course, it didn't, which resulted in the sink being full to the brim with dirty dishes. Ick.
                   Before everyone cleared for breakfast. As you can see, there was already a full sink.
                            After everyone has cleared. It's all on the counter, and needed rinsed at that point.
                 That was after it was all 'organized.' Obviously, the sink is in need of a major cleanup still.

So after everything was in the sink, we proceeded on with our school day. However, I got back to school much later than I usually do because I had extra dishes duty. All this happened because I fell down on my responsibilty a team member. Yes, it may have been a small mistake in the course of life, but when you add everything up, it's pretty irritating.When we got back from church, it was time to make lunch. But at that point, we needed to unload a dishwasher! So I began unloading, which was irritating for Mama because then I was getting into her way as she tried to make lunch.
When the whole team works together everything goes smoothly. Unfortunately, that's not what happened the other day, because just one person fell down on her duty as a team member. However, if everyone does work together (as happens relatively often...) no one is stressed out or mad at each other.
In the end, after we all worked together to get the dishes unloaded and then the other dishes loaded...everything worked out nicely! We had a nice, clean kitchen and a load off everyone's shoulders.
Ah, much better!
All that just goes to show that everybody needs to work as a team when you're in a big family. Otherwise, even if one person makes a silly, seemingly little mistake, it turns into a big problem for the rest of the day. 
Jesus said
A lesson on teamwork and we didn't have to take anyone to the ball field to get it! 
"Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor, for if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he hath not another to help him up. And if one shall prevail against him, two shall withstand him, and a threefold cord is not easily broken." Ecclesiates 4:9-10,12 This verse from Ecclesiates pertains to teamwork. Two are better than one! It's much easier to work together, with someone else, then to work apart.
I hope you enjoyed this post! Tomorrow, a book review of Ivanhoe for you!
In XC,

No comments:

Post a Comment