Saturday, February 27, 2016

One Step in Front of the Other

Moving towards developing your craft can be a challenging path when you see room for change with regard to current systems.

In general, it seems like people don't like a lot of change. It also seems like really taking the time to employ inclusive, deep, and comprehensive process is not our natural instinct as humans. The book, Intentional Interruption, supports that.

Yet, it is such a wonderful feeling to do a good job. Last year we spent lots and lots and lots of hours proposing a new model for our grade level team. There was a lot of waiting involved. For four months we revised and rewrote the proposal and waited for a response, and then finally in the last weeks of the school year our proposal was approved, and this year I am able to teach in ways I've dreamed of--deep, meaningful, comprehensive ways since there's greater team and a more streamlined menu of tasks which enables me to spend more time on the details and lessons. I LOVE it!

Now, I want to make it better. Let's face it, what I like about working is the challenge to keep developing craft, getting better, and doing a good job. I'll never be satisfied to leave things as they are because getting better and doing a good job is at the heart of what I do as lead learner and teacher to my students.

What I hope for is that schools will begin to develop more inclusive, steady, and organic processes for idea generation, share, implementation, assessment, and refinement. I want to see a more flattened hierarchy, hybrid roles, and greater teamwork--the kind of teamwork I witnessed on IDEO's well-known grocery cart video.

I want to see us reaching out for more modern, comprehensive, and deep processes for developing good work. For example, I believe that organizations like The Energy Project have something to teach school communities--they have what we need, and at some time in the near future I'm going to dig into their website to learn more as I know it's going to translate into better work.

Overall it's a one step in front of the other process of discovering ideas and ways to do the job better; advocating for those ideas with the best processes, language, and efforts I know; and then continuing to advocate even if no one responds emails, answers the questions, or provides support. There are some who are there willing and able to help, and there are others who aren't ready to support the forward movement, but I suppose that happens everywhere and to everyone. And I know I'm tenacious about good ideas--when I see one or hear of it, I want to embed it as quickly as I can. Why wait when we know we can do it better?

As I write, I realize I've written these ideas several times over during my tenure. I'll be on the lookout for those who experience what I do to gain a bit of wisdom as I forward the research and learning I've done. Onward.