Saturday, July 14, 2018

Start With WHY

I hope with all of my heart that I inspire others. 

Being an educator is truly a gift in my life.  I love getting to know people (of all ages) and supporting them through the process of learning new things and recognizing their own talents and abilities. 

In my role as an elementary school principal, I have found myself feeling overwhelmed by the list of new initiatives students and educators are being asked to coordinate and participate in.  I have immersed myself in Simon Sinek's work this summer in an effort to find additional ways to continue the growth of a positive and authentic culture in my school and to help our educators identify their passions, prioritize their work, and reflect on what is most important.  I want educators to be able to use their WHY to stay passionate in their work, inspire their students and contribute to the learning of their colleagues.  (There is an endless amount of research that shows the impact of a positive school culture and student achievement, like this.)

One of the things that validate starting with WHY is that it is rooted in brain science!

Taken from a presentation I'm creating for PD with administrators linked here.

There are a lot of educators who have used Sinek's work to inspire them. I came across a blog post from Three Teachers Talk entitled, "Starting With WHY" , that explains the importance of educators communicating their WHY to students.  Look at how powerful it is:

-Three Teachers Talk (2016)

  I was so impressed and moved by the Three Teachers Talk blog post that I wrote the following comment.

As you can see, I wrote this response on July 2nd and I have not been able to get it out of my mind since then.  I am so concerned that talented educators are going to leave education because of the added demands and I am committed to building a trusting school culture where students, staff, and families feel safe to take risks in order to learn and grow.  Regardless of my role in education, I will always stay connected to my roots as a teacher.

I decided to reach out to educators on Twitter to see what their WHY was!

Click here for link to this tweet.

The amazing Tracy Cramer responded with a Ted Talk she made explaining how she found her WHY in 54 words!

Other educators shared their WHY on this padlet: Start With WHY Educator Share

So, here are my next steps!  I am finalizing two professional development experiences- one for the district administrators in August and the other for staff on opening day.  BUT WE NEED TO DO MORE THAN PD.  I need your help.  We need to find a way to use WHY to guide our work more directly in education, to keep passion in education and to prioritize our initiatives.  Please share your suggestions, experiences, and comments below!

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