In February, the 2015 Education Innovation Fellows went to see close to 10 schools over the course of a week during our trip to California. You can imagine that seeing so many innovative practices in person, in addition to hearing from nearly as many experts in the field of individualized learning, can lead to some big ideas.
Believe me, I have some! The list of professional, support, training and logistical changes I hope to make in the next year is staggering. My principal is going to be a little overwhelmed when we meet next.
It would be easy to enter full steam ahead, crafting changes that are well-intentioned to help students and teachers. But no matter how excited we are, too much, too fast can often have the opposite effect. When leaders don’t know the central focus, all areas suffer.
Likewise, I’m working really hard to pace myself and my coworkers. A term I heard at an EdTech conference this past summer was the “someday/Monday” paradigm (I wrote about this a little bit a few weeks ago), and as an action item lover, it struck a chord with me.
Essentially, the “someday/Monday” paradigm puts forward the following: YES! Someday, we want to change the face of education in our country! It will be great. Books will be written about how excellent we are. However, we have to go teach on Monday. We must work towards longer-term significant change, and one of the ways we’ll get there is through small, incremental change on the daily.
Throughout our trip, I worked hard to think of longer-term changes (someday) and shorter-term goals (Monday!). CityBridge was particularly helpful in supporting this as we finished our trip. Our last formal activity was thinking about where we wanted to be in the next few months. This perfect midpoint between an ending point and Monday—including getting my team and my principal on board—will hopefully guide my school’s journey toward more personalized learning for our students.