THE RAMBLINGS OF
Hello. My name is Steven Lamb and I am a recovering flag pole hugger. (Hi Steve!)
My fellow Apple Distinguished Educators will understand this term, others may find it an oddity.It was my experience at the 2017 Apple Distinguished Educator (ADE) Academy that introduced me to the change management idea. In a nutshell:
Metaphorically:Change is going from one island to another. The three type of people on the island are:
I did not look before I swam, and I naively thought the water would be clear and calm. I was wrong. Not everyone is ready for change or a different perspective. It may go against what they have always believed. I won't go into detail, but many of the people knew only to attack, or as they see it, defend. Either way, it stopped my swimming for a bit. I crawled back to my island and grabbed my flag pole. Except my flag pole wasn't about being stubborn with traditional teaching methods. It was how I refused to loosen my view about the perceived new methods. Please don’t misunderstand me, my frustration didn’t completely stop me from developing wonderful co-worker relationships. It did, however, result in my spending an exorbitant amount of time trying to change peoples minds in a heavy handed way. I was so frustrated by the shark attacks I would not budge anymore. Tech and innovation is all there should be and everything (and everyone) is ridiculous if they don't believe the same. I refused to see others’ reasons why they might be hesitant.
I forgot there needs to be balance.
My experience with the 2017 ADE Academy, and other recent events, allowed me to loosen my grasp on the flag. I met other teachers with similar experiences. I met educators with brilliant ideas and a vision that matched my own. Yet many of these educators were clear and calm. They had found balance and understood that in order to affect change, everybody on the island has a role. The change management solidified that idea, and Sady Paulson hammered it home. If Sady would have held on to one flag pole for too long, she would have never reached the other island or the many islands that followed. Her story taught me that whether we hang on to a flag pole or not, we cannot be stagnant. Sometimes we dive in, sometimes we’re cautious, and sometimes we hold on a bit. Eventually, we must move and I am now ready to let go and move on.