Monday, October 29, 2007

Evolving in a Metamorphic World


Teachers are evolutionary. They start each year fresh, making adaptations to the way they did things in the past. Each year, getting incrementally better. They look back at their notes and change a lesson here or there, fine tuning their instruction. They reflect throughout the summer about missed opportunities and how they will not let that happen this year. They sift through files, throwing out old files and making room for new ideas. These are important processes for teachers to embrace change and try new things. Unfortunately, it is too slow. With the speed at which technology changes, teachers need to undergo a metamorphosis in order to transform into technology savvy instructors. The question is, how to do we take chimps and turn them into butterflies. Chimps are good animals. They are highly evolved, social, intelligent animals. But they can not grow wings in a week's time. They can develop opposable thumbs, given a few thousand years, but we are looking for transformation, the kind that takes place within a chrysalis.

So the question is, how do we transform our teachers into butterflies? How do we grow wings and allow our teachers to soar? Of course, we can't get all teachers to change overnight. However, we can start looking at ourselves differently. If we view ourselves as butterflies, we can jump from higher perches and try more challenging ideas.

Instead of weeding through an old file and throwing a paper here or there, try dumping the whole folder and trying something completely different. Butterflies are fragile animals, like our confidence when it comes to technology, but they are able to fly incredible distances.

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