Do-Overs — Every September!
It’s what makes education so much fun.
If something didn’t quite work out this school year there’s always next year. Our profession is kind of unique that way. I’ve always liked the fact that we get to press ‘reset’. As teachers, administrators and support staff we get do-overs all the time.
We also have an education system that supports repeat opportunities for students. I’d like to take a close look at WHY we should remember to have that mindset of providing do-overs for our students.
School is a safe place — as educators we take enormous pride in creating spaces that are emotionally safe for everyone regardless of their story or history. For some of our students the stark reality is that we may be the ONLY place in their world where they feel the most connected to an adult. A place where some may form their only trusting, compassionate relationships with a caring adult.
Happy New Year everyone! I hope that your summer was glorious. As the calendar turned to August my mind turned to the year ahead. I wondered about what to write for my first blog of the new year. Then one day while having a conversation with my mom I was reminded about something funny at the movies … many, many, MANY years ago.
The story goes something like this …
Going to the Movies with Mom
When I was a young boy of about 5 or 6 I went to the movies with my mom. As we were waiting for the movie to start we both noticed another little boy moving between the aisles focused entirely on picking up litter. We were impressed and my mom told him what a good thing he was doing. He shrugged his shoulders, “It’s a Living”.
It was hard not to laugh and if I’m truthful I probably did — I don’t actually remember. I do remember that he was very serious about his job — it was important work. He was making a difference. It was his work.
Dogs Make a Big Difference in the Lives of Others
As we recalled this story it actually caused me to reflect a bit about my own work in education. As I am now in my 50s — certainly now with more of my career behind me than in front of me — I sometimes stop and wonder about the impact I’ve had on people in our schools and at the board office:
- Have I made a difference? A really positive difference?
- Have I taken some chances? Taken enough risks?
- Will I have any regrets when I do retire?
Sometimes my inspiration for a new blog post comes from educational websites, sometimes from personal conversations, and sometimes from news articles in the local paper. I also read other blogs to gain inspiration. That’s where this one came from — I recently read a post from a teaching colleague that motivated me to create my own short list of Star Wars Wisdom.
For those of you unfamiliar with my passion for Star Wars I should tell you that it is truly one of those past-times from my youth which has extended into my adult life. I get just as excited for the next Star Wars movie as I was for the last one.
As we close out another school year and head into the summer break it seems like a fitting time to discuss some important leadership lessons that I’ve learned over the years — and how Star Wars shares some of this wisdom: