Teamwork is a hard thing to teach, especially to siblings that seem to enjoy working solo more often than not. While I don’t think teamwork is something you can or should force, I think there are subtle ways to encourage it and build on learning how to work with other people. After all, most jobs require working with other people at some point or another.
So, our teamwork can via rainbows. If you can’t learn a lesson from rainbows (and maybe unicorns) I might throw in the towel.
How rainbows build teamwork
With the school year being over and a paper plate craft kit on hand, the girls let their creative juices shine. We started with a patriotic project I dreamed up to give them some direction. While they were working on that, their own ideas blossomed and I allowed them to run with it.
Teamwork comes in all shapes and sizes and there were several places that the girls allowed it to show through.
1. Mixing the colors
They could see the potential they had with only a few paint colors and decided they needed more. With one sister getting the right number of plates out for each color, another sister getting brushes for mixing and another doing the mixing, in no time, they had a whole spectrum of ROY G. BIV colors to pain a rainbow.
2. Getting the shape right
With the paper plates, they first thought they would paint the entire plate with a rainbow. Then, one of them suggested cutting it in half and retrieved some scissors. Before they got to painting, they decided that maybe cutting the middle out of the plate would leave the best shape to paint a rainbow. So, they trimmed them down some more.
3. Getting the space
Working together, they cleared a space for their rainbow projects to happen. It was a coordinated effort to move things out of the way and to move a protective floor covering into the space. They used nice words and got it done very quickly. They are motivated by paint!
4. Get your paint on (and off)
They figured it was easiest to use their own brush instead of trying to have a brush for each other. But, they also decided they didn’t want any paint colors being further mixed, so, paper towels to the rescue. They helped each other clean off their own brushes so their rainbows had just the right colors they wanted in place.
Nothing builds teamwork like patience. They wanted to decorate with the rainbows, but they had to wait for them to dry. Together, they organized most of the trash (I know not to expect a perfectly clean space), put scissors and used paper towels away and got the tape out for displaying their rainbows once they were dry.
While letting them dry, they caught up on Netflix’s Project MC2 show on Teamwork: Ep. 103: Smart is the New Cool. After McKeyla insists she works better alone, she learns that four is better than one when her friends jump in to help her rescue the Prince from a botched space mission.
Once they were completely dry, the tape was carefully rolled into circles so the rainbows could be displayed in the kitchen window for all to enjoy. Not only could they be proud of their work, but they could be proud that they accomplished the end result together and we are all able to enjoy it.