Teachers are, by nature, protective of their practice and their space. In this way, even before I enter a teacher's room, I must establish the requisite rapport to garner the invitation. From there, the teacher picks the class, the day, and the time. Then she gives me a sense of what she's doing, has just finished, or will be doing soon. Finally, I show up and get to work.
Ultimately, I had no idea if anyone would invite me in. Moreover, I didn't know if the lessons would work once I was invited. What I learned, however, is that only the former matters. Like an educational grandparent, if I show up and the lesson bombs, I get to leave and let the teacher move on without me. But the fact that teachers are willing to give up control of their rooms -- to an administrator -- without so much as a hint about what will happen when I get there, well, that's how I know the flashes are working.
For all but one, I admit to having only a Google-search-based knowledge of the content, yet teachers keep inviting me in
Too often, administrators leave the classroom and only return with a laptop and a framework. For many of us, leaving the classroom is really only a physical phenomenon because we never really leave. I confess that my flash lessons are motivated, in small part, by my own envy of so many amazing teachers who work in my district. But what I couldn't have counted on was the camaraderie, rapport, and trust that the lessons would create between administrators and teachers.
Ultimately, we need to remind ourselves of that immutable fact, to be as human as possible, and to look for, rather than to abandon, our own "flashes."
Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.