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edu180atl: jill gough 8.14.12

I am new to my community – a stranger, if you will.  As a fledgling member of the community, I need and want to hear the stories of the children and my colleagues, the history of the people and the place. One spectacular opportunity afforded me is to hear the same story from multiple perspectives.  I value the luxury of learning and seeing through multiple lenses.

Through which lens do I choose to look at my surroundings?  On what do I choose to focus?  How do I practice seeing bright spots?  How often do I focus on success rather than struggle?  How do I make the practice of bright-spot-seeking a habit?  Do I teach this habit to others?

For our children, school begins tomorrow. What will they want and need from us, their teachers?  How will we offer feedback as they learn and grow?  Is it our habit to highlight their success or their struggle?  When we mark student papers, do we “award credit” or do we “take points off?” Literally, what do we mark?  What is our habit? What are we teaching through our habit?

How do our actions impact the lens through which our learners see themselves? How does our habit impact the way we see our learners? I am learning to make a point to change my lens to see with different clarity.  What does the story say if I change my view? What do we learn as we try on a new lens?

Jill Gough serves as Director of Teaching and Learning at Trinity School.  She risks, questions and seeks feedback to improve. You can follow her on Twitter at @jgough.

12 Comments Post a comment
  1. Stephen Kennedy #

    I love the reflection through questioning, and the challenge through modest teacher wondering.

    August 14, 2012
  2. The best learning always starts with questions and you ask some great ones here. I know that you will do a great job in a great learning community! Have a great year learning with all of the different perspectives 🙂

    August 14, 2012
  3. So glad to have you and the new lenses you bring to us…I like to think of them as progressive lenses!

    August 14, 2012
  4. If we all saw the same way, we’d never make progress — with programs, with people, and with ours/others’ perceptions. Love this post, Jill, and love especially how you remind us to find bright spots and start with awarding credit. Trinity is lucky to have you! And you will grow by being at Trinity as well. Good things ahead…

    August 14, 2012
  5. Bright start to new opportunities for you! Maybe I am just pumped from spending the day with John Hunter, but I feel like there is potential where a few years ago there was not. Good luck on first day!

    August 14, 2012
  6. This is beautiful, Jill. I will be reading and re-reading this post as I try to settle into a new-old place with fresh eyes.

    August 14, 2012
  7. Being new to something or some place is a great challenge…and an immeasurable blessing. We refocus and repurpose when we become new. Thanks for the great questions and charges in this post to encourage careful “lens consideration” when we work with learners!

    August 15, 2012
  8. Maryellen Berry #

    Jill, your post reminds me to be diligent in searching for the bright spots when the clouds hover. You are one of the bright spots at Trinity. Thanks for sharing your heart and mind with us and with the greater community.

    August 15, 2012
  9. Jill, your post reminds me of work we are studying on Appreciative Inquiry. And, of course, if we engage in learning as human-beings empathy is the best place to start. Thanks for the reminder as we begin the year! Trinity is blessed to have you!

    August 15, 2012
  10. Jill, your post is a wonderful reflection on the art of the question. School has traditionally been a place that provides answers, but an answer is a terminus. A question offers bridges, turns, roads, or completely undiscovered opportunities for travel. Best wishes on your new journey.

    August 15, 2012
  11. Nothing guarantees success, but success certainly has its early indicators. Asking lots of questions and letting answers arrive through observation, reflection and collaboration sets you up for a greats start at a new adventure. And yes, before our students even step into our classroom, they learn from us in the habits that we demonstrate each and every day.

    We are blessed to be in a profession that offers new beginnings. What if we were all mindful of our behaviors and tendencies, the way we phrase things, the good and the bad, as each new beginning rolls around?

    August 28, 2012

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  1. Try on a new lens – edu180atl: jill gough 8.14.12 | Experiments in Learning by Doing

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