One of the hardest parts of being a Technology Coach, *ITRT, *IFT, *SBTS, *TRT, is when you are so excited about a tool or skill and your colleague isn’t. My whole job is teaching teachers how to integrate technology so I create videos, PDFs with instructions and model or co-teach, but when I’m out of sight I may be out of mind. Does it hurt my ego? Absolutely. After all, I’ve
listened to podcasts, read blogs, watched videos of the new skill being used, spoken with others who use it and if I’m lucky enough, spent time with the creator understanding their vision and figuring out how to extend that idea in our lessons. Why wouldn’t a classroom teacher, in charge of 25 students, full of responsibilities take my idea as passionately as I do?
Then I took a minute to Pause-which I’m learning about in my latest training based on Fierce Conversations by Susan Scott. Pause causes us to listen, look and see what our colleagues really did hear. Have they used that idea in some way? Have they found a way to implement it? Can you see sparks of it in different lessons?
Recently I took the time to pause for this very reason. Last year we built a Makerspace in an empty classroom. We had nothing but tables and chairs. One year later it is a dream come true. For me, there is so much possibility sitting in here, quietly, collecting dust. This is no slight any educator I’m lucky enough to learn from. My school is filled with determined, passionate and skilled professionals who will do what is needed for their students to succeed. We have seen growth in their academics, their thinking, but more importantly their confidence. The students walk taller. The family involvement is growing and the teachers are proud.
After my Pause, I realized that I need to evaluate and find connection. During this time I spent a lot of time observing, and I bet you already know what I finally saw. Teachers are creating lessons that require students to think, evaluate and collaboratively work to achieve a goal. They are using those tools and giving space for the students to explore. Learning is happening everywhere and by everyone-no matter the age, experience or knowledge of robotics. Social media posts pop up that say “my class used this tool to create bridge” Conversations randomly happen in the hall centered around a tool that explained how it was used in their class, while I wasn’t watching.
An effective leader creates more leaders. Being an effective leader means that we need to step aside, let the idea digest, be applied and celebrated. It’s at that moment that we find the value in the Pause.
ITRT: Instructional Technology Resource Teacher
IFT: Instructional Facilitator, Technology
SBTS: School Based Instructional Technology Specialist
TRT: Technology Resource Teacher