Teamwork Makes the Dreamwork

Orange Banders celebrate after helping one another climb a wall, because..why not?!?

What is at the heart of all of the work we do as a band? Teamwork, of course!

Inherent in all that we do to articulate and express our individual personalities, passions, and interests is the need to know ourselves best so that we can work with others better.

Our work on projects in the shop are so often dependent on teamwork

The Orange Band has been tackling what good teamwork looks like, sounds like, and feels like throughout all of our provocations and projects in this Heart Arc. Each week, students participated in a variety of different team-building activities. The experiences we collected in each of these activities, reflecting both our successes and areas for growth, have been in our minds and hearts as we continue to understand what it means for this group of diverse thinkers and learners to work as a cohesive, kind, and supportive unit.

How do teammates communicate ideas in kind ways?

Solin works on building a tower of dry spaghetti sticks strong enough to hold a marshmallow on top!

Ah, but four hands are even better than two!

Sometimes time constraints lead to “ah ha!” moments

Nolan puts his idea to work!

How do we combine the different ideas of a team?

Reyahn, Lola, Lars, and Arlo check in about the strategies they have seen work.

Lucky for this team, there are experienced spaghetti architects on hand

Yes! Success!!!

After a few different team challenges, Orange Banders began to list out the Qualities of Good Teamwork that we saw in each other and ourselves.

Crossing the River – how do you work as team of eight on ONE challenge that calls for group success, not just that of an individual?

Solin gets across the “river” ONLY with the combined help and strategies of the group

Lola lays out the next stepping stone before returning to the shore

Lars sets up the next kiddo to cross behind him

Are we on the same page as our teammates?

A group of three means three times the ideas

Partnerships naturally leads to collaboration and joint decision making

This list then helped to inform how the Orange Band created a Teamwork Rubric, identifying the following areas:

  • Staying Positive
  • Being Helpful
  • Communication and Listening
  • Building Off Other’s Ideas

Once kiddos created these four different categories for our work together, we began to find the language and actions that showed the range of how we might fall into each category on a given day, during a given activity. We recognized that each day we are together is a unique moment in time, a crystallized, joint experience. Some days we might find ourselves truly Growing into ourselves as team members. Other days, we are just like Seedlings, at the very start of our journey as a productive and kind teammate. And all times we might also be in a stage of Sprouting, somewhere in between.

After creating a first version of a Teamwork Rubric, Orange Banders self-assessed themselves, individually and as a whole band. We found that we needed to tweak the attributes of the different Teamwork categories here and there. We also noted that we could show a range of teamwork qualities in one activity!

The latest and greatest version of the Orange Band Teamwork Rubric!

With kindness–towards ourselves and others–and productivity our biggest aims, we will surely continue to revise and add to our understanding of what makes a good team and a good team member. As we move into our final weeks of this Heart Arc together, one thing is certain: in the Orange Band, teamwork most definitely makes the dreamwork!