The personal learning network for educators
This I believe. . . with an attempt at order. . . but none are negotiable -
10. Working with kids is a privilege.
The privilege of working with kids is just that – a privilege. If your heart isn’t in it, you aren’t going to be effective and could probably make a better contribution elsewhere. If your heart is in it, you are so needed – and you can make the world a better place.
9. Together, we are better.
Parents, teachers and students bring their own perspectives to the educational experience. Listening to each other helps us understand and support student learning in the very best way possible.
I work for kids, but I understand that I can’t do my best work for kids unless I work with families. If parents and teachers aren’t working together well, kids lose.
8. Leadership isn’t attached to position.
I am part of a network of leaders. Students and parents will take a lead role at times. Teacher leaders are critical. Unless leadership permeates the organization, we can’t have the learning organizations that we all want -
7. People are good. Give the benefit of the doubt more often than not.
There isn’t one kid in trouble that wants to be there. If they really knew how to succeed, all kids would.
Kids that are in trouble need to be taught how to avoid the same or similar situations in future – and they may not be able to change the behaviour the very first time. Change takes time. Change happens.
Teachers, parents, students – and administrators – do the very best they can with the skills, knowledge and tools they have at the time. “When we know better, we do better.” (Oprah, I think.)
6. Inclusion is worth the effort.
Every child has a right to an education that is appropriate to their own needs as close to their own community as possible.
Inclusive settings with supports and services represent ‘the ideal model’ for education.
Supports and services that kids need must ‘go to the kids’; not the other way around.
5. All children can learn.
All children have learning potential and can build on what they are already understand and can do. Adults need to be ‘keen observers’ of students in order to support them most effectively as they learn and grow.
4. Learning trumps compliance in a safe learning environment
Kids need to ask questions and follow their own thinking. Good teachers and parents know when to let kids make decisions on their own. There is no better way to learn what will work – and what won’t – than by doing. . . Respect that.
3. Children are more likely to become the person you tell them they are – for better or for worse.
Be aware of the words that you use when speaking to a child. They are developing a sense of self – and your words are powerful. Use those words to positively support and shape a child.
2. Every child is valuable, belongs and contributes in his or her own way.
Educators have incredible influence and their underlying thinking about each child affects how other children and adults see and treat them.
Educators who see the potential and contribution of every child make the world a better place by showing us all what to see and how to grow with each other.
Educators who are not able to see clearly the potential and contribution of every child need to reconsider the decision to be an educator.
1. You can’t go wrong if you put the needs of the child at the center of every decision.