How can a school encourage and foster a sharing culture properly? Can it even be done properly? Will there always be those couple of ‘old school’ teachers in there, ready to chop down any “new” ideas?
I was asked recently to present something short at a staff meeting after my AP had walked into my room and saw my kids doing Teach/OK as part of us working on Whole Brain Teaching this year. She was really excited about it and, to be honest, so was I because my kids have been fantastic with it so far!
So, I enthusiastically brought along my ideas to staff meeting. I was shoved to the end of staff meeting as more pressing admin matters needed to be discussed. I get it. Anyway, I was told I had 30 seconds to present as the meeting was almost overtime.
I gave my hurried explanation and despite my time restrictions, I feel as though I was still able to convey my enthusiasm about Whole Brain Teaching and what it can do for students.
I was then spoken about behind my back in the staff room because I’m not the only one who uses WBT in the classroom. Nor did I ever claim to be.
The point is, this happens far too often. I’m asked to share something (whether I already do it or I’ve learned it on a PD day), I’m really enthusiastic about it, I try to ramp it up to whoever I’m sharing with and I get shut down. Or, at least, no one shares my enthusiasm.
I went to a Handwriting and Spelling PD because I really had no idea how to run a spelling program. I came back with many ideas, shared them with a teacher and was told “Oh yeah, that’s been around for ages!”