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Thursday, December 25, 2014

Manager, Officer, Facilitator. . .Playmaker?

As an educator, what is your role--officer, manager, facilitator. . .playmaker?

In the changing structure of schools and society, I am thinking about the descriptors we use to talk about our role.

This came to mind the other day when teachers were discussing behavior in the halls--there were many words used, words that ranged from more police-like words to the kinds of words used by camp counselors.

Similarly when we talk, write, or lead with students or colleagues, what words do we use--are they words that invite inclusivity or words that emphasize hierarchy or somewhere in the middle?

What words invite collaboration and what words incite fear, frustration, and discord.

In the changing world of schools and learning, the words we use and way we use those words matter a lot. This point signals change for many of us, particularly those of us who are veterans in the population.

I was reminded of this when I spoke with my son this morning.  He responded, "Mom, everyone knows that," and I replied "Not really, your generation knows that, but others don't necessarily know that."

So as I think about this, I realize I need to be cognizant of the kinds of words I use, the way I use them. I need to ask more clarifying questions and question in ways that invite positive discussion and decision making.

There's more to come in this arena, but I'm opening up the avenue of thought--one I'll think about as I busily clean, cook, and prepare for today's festivities.