As this Hyde & Asia 5 Yrs. Out series appears on this blog, my wife Laura and a team of Hyde faculty members and Asian students are facilitating Hyde Family Education sessions in Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen. Here’s Laura’s report on the Beijing sessions:
Thursday, June 28, Hyde held its first international FLC in Beijing, China. We welcomed seven families, five from the Woodstock campus and two from the Bath campus and the Hyde team consisted of Claire Grant, Don MacMillan, Bob Felt, Cindy Guan, Fan Luo and Laura Gauld.
After introductions, we did a group warm-up and jumped right into the exercises. Each participant was asked to stand and share two to three defining moments in their life. The students translated after their parents spoke and it was notable how many folks mentioned “coming to Hyde” as one of the defining moments. After the life stories, we broke for lunch and families finished the sentence completion exercise while also sharing a meal as families.
After lunch, the group split into families and did the sentence completion exercise, family shields and shared journaling questions in a family solo format. It was inspiring to see the families work on their shields as the students took leadership within their families and the group. The students kept referring to the confidence and courage they have gained at Hyde. As one Uncle said, (who was there to represent his family), “My niece didn’t have too many nice things to say at first about Hyde, but now she is excited and talks about it all the time!”
The day was not without a “Hyde challenge.” One Dad was taken out to the hallway for a “You need to put your cell phone away so you can focus on your family and yourself” challenge. After a few tense moments, he came back and took a step with his family. At the end of the meeting, he proudly showed us all the business emails that he did not answer as he smiled.
After the solos, faculty and students showed the parents how to give Hyde feedback The parents listened intently and especially loved it when we spoke to the student about their best self and challenged them to take another step. At the end, we circled up and shared inspiration and lessons learned from the day. Comments from the day included:
- “My Dad has changed but I am still afraid to open up to him.”
- “I did not know these things about my parents, (and about my children)”
- “I didn’t realize how much my sister would embrace the Hyde process.”
- “My kids are stronger than I thought.”
- “Today, I apologized to my child for the past.”
- “I learned that I have courage.”
- “Today was a deep experience for me and I thank Hyde for that.”
- “My child is the bridge from our family to Hyde.”
Each family met with the Head of School during the day and we ended with a group picture and lots of hugs and new connections. It was an inspiring day and another powerful reminder that we are more alike than we are different. On to Shanghai!
All good stuff! Onward, Malcolm Gauld