My drives home from work are usually spent thinking and reflecting on the day, the week, or just life in general. (Occasionally there’s a sing-a-long to a favorite song or a long overdue phone conversation with a friend thrown into the mix.) Lately, my thoughts have revolved around the notion of change. On a global scale, our world is constantly experiencing change – new obstacles, new breakthroughs, new leaders. A little bit closer to home, we have a new season upon us, friends of mine are reaching new milestones, and of course I’m about make a huge change – one career for the pursuit of another.
Change was also on my mind this afternoon after attending one of my last faculty meetings. The teaching profession is no stranger to change – new students, new staff, new regulations, new curriculums, new etc. But it just so happens that at this time when I am leaving the profession, massive amounts of change are knocking on its door – all at once. New standards, new evaluation systems, new materials. The changes are all hopefully for the betterment of our students, but they’re also a huge challenge for my colleagues.
Our principal, however, said something today at the meeting that made sense and I think can be applied to any person experiencing change and possibly feeling overwhelmed. She was referring to the new curriculum being delivered to our school, sources that have not yet been used by anyone in our building. The thought of using foreign materials, on top of pre-exisiting conditions in the workplace, can definitely cause some stress for an educator. But she put it like this: The materials are not going to do the teaching. It is the teacher who does the teaching.
In other words, we are the facilitators of our own success. It is what WE do with change that will determine the outcome.
I have no doubt that, while the road may be a little rough, my friends and colleagues will achieve success with the new programs and continued success with their careers and our students. If all they need to do is keep being wonderful teachers and people, then it’s in the bag! xoxo