Tagged: professional development

Sharing practice – whose responsibility is it?

Over the last few years, I have seen amazing teachers get dragged down and raked over the coals for “not sharing what they do”. This accusation is often made as a way of labeling a teacher as “uncollaborative” – a really serious crime in modern schools, it seems.

“I just don’t know what she’s doing… I wish she would share” they say.

And yet, it is often more about the person making the accusation than the accused.

By saying you don’t know what they are doing, you are basically admitting that you have made zero effort to be curious enough to find out! Weird.

But then, it does make me wonder about that sense of entitlement many teachers have… and a tendency to operate from a transactional perspective rather than a transformational one. How many times do you hear things like:

  • “I would do more inquiry if my students were more curious”
  • “I would use maths manipulatives if the school ordered more”
  • “I would do play-based learning if we had more time”
  • “I would take my students out there if there was more equipment”
  • “I would do that if you show me exactly what to do”

and…

“I would know all the wonderful things that teacher is doing if they shared them with me”

There is one, very quick, very easy and very powerful way to find out what people are doing. Go and take a look. Walk in the door. Speak to the kids. Listen in. Take some photos.

Its not threatening – it is flattering.

Let’s face it, most of the best teachers we know are not 100% sure what they’re going to be doing with their students until they are doing it. Also, most of those teachers do share their ideas with us during planning sessions… but other people often just don’t get it until they see it.

The best way to share is to show, not tell. The best way to have something shared with you… is to go and take a look for yourself.

Whose classroom are you going into today???

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