I say this with sincerity, because everything I learn exposes other things that I don’t know — new questions, new unknowns, new explorations. As Superintendent, this provides that ‘fire-in-my-belly’ for me to push ahead.
The opportunities to learn are limitless. There is no finish line.
Does increased knowledge translate into having wisdom? Are people who know lots of stuff necessarily wise?
Wisdom requires more than knowing a collection of stuff.
WISDOM results when one’s knowledge is blended with HUMILITY, REFLECTION and GROWTH.
Humility provides the mindset to truly understand your learning journey;
Reflection results when you process context and previous learning into your new learning; and
Growth happens when the knowledge you learn broadens your understanding.
“Being better tomorrow than we are today” is something I talk about a lot — in my daily interactions, my blog posts, in all sorts of meetings …
But, what does it mean to be ‘Better’?
I explored this this topic the other day with our school trustees and thought it might also make for an interesting blog post. So, here we are …
When I engage others in conversation about our road to improvement, I reflect on a reminder I have above my desk about the need to move forward:
“It’s OK to be where you are right now. It’s just not OK to stay there.“
These concepts of ‘being better‘ and ‘finding ways to move forward‘ form an important part of my mindset on personal and organizational growth. But, the question still remains … what does BETTER actually mean?
Education is a place where we regularly hear fears about things impinging on our schools. This is particularly true when we talk about technology. Whenever a new technology approaches we sometimes hear negative reactions from the community. Technology is great until someone says it isn’t.
“The sky is falling. Save yourself!”
Let’s review some of the historical examples of technology fear:
Calculators – when these new electronic devices became widely available and affordable in the mid 70s the fear was that they would make students illiterate in math.
Internet – this innovation provided more immediate access to information as compared to the antiquated Dewey Decimal System card catalogue in the library. It was going to create chaos in our classrooms with rampant plagiarism.
Online Learning – this new type of virtual instruction was going to completely negate classroom teachers and change education into simple, rote memorization.
Wolfram Alpha – Introduced in 2009, this new website allowed users to generate answers to mathematic problems by using the site’s formulas. It would make learning math irrelevant and allow for rampant cheating.
None of those catastrophes happened — more on this in a bit.