Friday, 25 March 2016

End Of March Reflections

It's usually at this point in the year when I have to reassess and think more deeply about what I'm doing, the why and for who.

For much of my (albeit short in the grand scheme of teaching careers) career I've always been focussed on student well-being, staff development and personal inquiry based development. I'm a sponge. I've said it before and I'll say it again - but I soak up good things - as much as possible, and with that I get laden down with the bad stuff too.

Some times that bad stuff, although a mere drop in all the good that I do in my classes, school and homelife, can actually put the brakes on my overall wairua, hauora and personal mental state.

When I'm stressed I procrastinate further. I do things I shouldn't when I could have managed my time more effectively. I think about past issues rather than focus on the task at hand. I assume that this is similar to how my students must feel and why they sometimes choose to be immature, irresponsible and silly in class.

This month - on the 4th - I turned 28. Two years til 30. For the longest time I've been a goal setting person and there are goals I've accomplished and goals where I'm still striving to achieve them.

One particular goal - career oriented - has inadvertently led me towards another path. I'm still hooked on the idea I had previously and it bugs me because I don't want to change course, but I know I need to readjust my thinking, priorities and perspectives. At the end of the day - I just can't do everything. No matter how much I want to or think that I can do.

At the crux of the issue is that my passion for teaching is stretched throughout many areas. Particularly around staff development.

This new role will mean not only do I get personal inquiry based development, but I will also be able to do even more good in staff and student development too. It will undoubtedly improve student well-being and opportunities and can have an incredibly large impact.

The work that I'm doing in school - or the work that I'd like to do more of in school is stabilising. We have more hands on deck who are willing to help and give back. This is something I've wanted. At the end of the day I want to work in an environment that is collaborative, positive about sharing ideas and best practice and where innovation is recognised. We are heading there. After long struggles - we are on our way.

I need to readjust my thinking, my role in this as a mere cog in the awesome wheel and hopefully provide guidance and help where needed. Perhaps this is enough. I don't have to do everything. I shouldn't have had to either. The words a colleague said a few years ago on our way back from an educamp still ring true - I just don't have the clout. One day I may do - yet I'm happy to help where needed for now. I just need to figure out where that is.

I've spent a lot of time developing myself professionally and sharing my ideas at different conferences and spaces yet I really wanted to have a space where I could do that at school.

Finally realising that that space is in my class with my students has taken a long time. I still am crazy passionate about upskilling staff and my peers but my students should be the ones getting my awesomeness first.

Seeing my Y12s take on the Kanban boards so easily yesterday reminds me that I do know my stuff and that I need to implement it more often in class. Especially now that things are becoming more accessible and I can finally put things into practice.

These thoughts have been circling for a while in my head. Good to finally get them out of there..