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A few weeks ago I decided to clean my oven.  Months ago while baking, drippings ended up on the bottom of the oven.  As a result, every time I used the oven I was reminded of the spillage.  It was time for me to roll up my sleeves and clean it!

After collecting the cleaning supplies, I stooped on my knees and reached over the open oven door to clean.  It was a back-breaking experience!  In my pain, I remembered seeing something about the ease of removing the oven door from its hinge.  Once the oven door is out of the way there is free clearance to really get into the oven for a thorough cleaning. 

I stopped cleaning and did some YouTube research on how to remove an oven door.  After watching a few videos, I felt confident that I could remove the oven door.  It was so much easier cleaning the oven without the open door obstacle.  In time, the entire oven sparkled!

After cleaning the door, I proceeded to put the door back on the hinge.   However, it was not as easy to put it back on as it was taking it off the hinge.  The oven door was heavy and awkward to handle. I struggled for a long period until I finally gave up and consulted the stove’s manual.  The manual gave some simple steps and a few pictures; however, neither the steps nor the pictures helped me.  

I placed the door on my kitchen table to really investigate the hinge and problem-solve.  I noticed a release lever on the bottom of the hinge and I pressed it.  Pop!  A hooked end of the hinge arm fully opened up and I felt I was on the right track.  It seemed obvious the hooked end could connect to something in the slot of the stove. So, I released the other hinge and I was ready to place the door back on the oven.

Forty-five minutes later and the oven door continued to sit on the floor.  No luck!

I went to consult Google and YouTube.  I found an informative video that shed light on my dilemma.  The handyman in the video calmly stated, “...see these release levers, don’t touch them.  Do not release the levers until the hinge is securely inside the slots…”  All I could think of is- now you tell me!

My new problem- how to get the hinges back to the “starting point?”

I consulted YouTube, Google, and the stove’s manual.  A video shared the “lead pipe” technique.  To correct the situation, you need to use a lead pipe to act like a lever to pull the hooked end of the hinge back to the starting point.  Where am I going to get a lead pipe?  If I had a lead pipe I’m not sure I’d use it in the way that the video suggested. 

I went back to the oven door.

As I explored the hinge, I felt the tension when I pulled it back and I thought I could do it without a lead pipe. After a few tries I knew it was not going to be easy.  The hooked steel end of the hinge was sharp and hard to grip.  The tension spring on the hinge was strong and resistant.  As I struggled to pull it back into place I also began to think about who I can consult or bring in to help me.  Pulling down on the hinge seemed too hard for any mortal and getting the hinge back to the original state seemed impossible.

After about an hour or so of work with little success and a lot of frustration it was time for me to walk away.

Eventually, I came back to the “hinge dilemma” after a 2-hour rest.  I reminded myself that I’m a smart guy and I am capable of figuring this out.  I went back to the hinge and used a rag to pull it back into the original position.  I cleverly maneuvered a screwdriver in one hand, the rag in the other hand, and my foot to provide some leverage.  After a few attempts, It worked!  The hinge snapped back into place.  I was overjoyed!

I felt so proud of my problem-solving skills and I immediately went to the other side of the door to tackle the hinge.  No luck.  It seemed that I forgot what I did with the previous hinge and I could not get the second hinge back to the original position.  After about 45-minutes, I had to walk away and regroup.  

I came back in about an hour with confidence and determination.  Once again, I wrestled with the hinge using a screwdriver, a rag, and my foot.  It seemed that I’d almost get it into place and then it would snap back to its “unnatural” position.  I was at a point where my body was sweaty, my hand raw, but my determination was mighty!  And at last … I was unsuccessful.  Both hinges were back in the original position.

I quickly picked up the oven door and put it back into place.  I checked to make sure it worked with pride.  The door and hinges were in operation- easy opening and closing.  The oven sparkled and so did I. I did it!  

I’ve been thinking about this experience and my learning.  I’m not a handyman and never really liked “fixing things.”  My father used to say this about himself, “what takes most men an hour to fix something takes me 3 hours…”  I believe I’m my father’s son!  However, I knew that I could be successful with my “oven-door-hinge” problem if I employed an abundance of time, did some research, and applied a resilient mindset.  

I was successful and I learned so much because I spent the necessary hours working and problem-solving.  It was the hours I spent researching, analyzing, and problem-solving that led to my success.  I didn’t measure my investment in “minutes” but in “hours.”  I took all the time that I needed to learn and resolve the situation.  I gave myself breaks and stroked my ego.

Learning takes time.  Investing time often leads to success!

I didn’t give up learning or working through the situation.  I took the time necessary to regroup and relax.  I told myself that I could do it!  I believe my grit and resilience led to my success and often contributes to most of our successful learning.  The term, “sweat equity” really describes this situation.  Sweat equity is defined as “ a contribution to a project or enterprise in the form of effort and toil.  It is a direct result of hard work.”  I achieved my goal because of the work, time, and commitment that I was willing to apply to the situation. I displayed a high level of sweat equity!

I believe time and sweat equity are important characteristics of learning.  At AISK, we fully appreciate the whole child and we understand that growth is measured on an individual scale.  We do see the importance of developmental milestones and grade-level expectations; however we employ the “not yet” philosophy when mapping out a child’s future.  Learning and teaching requires time and sweat equity of both the teacher and learner. 

Learning takes time.  At AISK, we are ready to foster the time needed to engage the learner and build concepts. Engaging the learner requires sweat equity for both the learner and teacher.  AISK teachers will not give up and employ multiple ways to teach and engage students within the learning process.  AISK teachers will not succumb to the pressure of time and will.  AISK teachers will differentiate learning to meet the needs of all children.  The success of the learner defines the successful teacher.   

AISK’s learning environment is very different from other schools.  We intentionally use time and sweat equity to work with individuals in our classrooms.  We believe in the power of learning and accept all the characteristics within the learning process.  Learning takes time and work. 

How does the AISK philosophy of a leaner compare to your school?

AISK is a unique learning center on the island.  It’s time to check out how we can build a difference in your child.