I love this quote. It reminds me of so much in our lives. One of my dearest friends, Denise, just sent her youngest off to school at Texas Tech in Lubbock. We just talked about the “empty nest” she and her husband are now experiencing. What a change!
Glenn and Callista (our “do everything with” friends) have just recently moved in together. They are combining households and learning how to live together. A huge change, even though it is a beautiful thing!
My sweet husband, Dave, is about to retire at the end of this year. We are already talking about how he will be experiencing an enormous change---he won’t have to get up at 4:45 anymore. Wowee!
Being diagnosed with breast cancer this year has been the absolute biggest change in my life! Learning about the new normal with surgeries and doctor appointments has changed our lives forever. I am so very grateful to be alive and waiting on my last major surgery to be finished with this changing episode in my life.
As I say all this, our sweet M.E., our 12 ½ year old yellow Lab, is beginning to lose her faculties. She urinates on the carpet (which prior to this year would have mortified her as much as it is currently mortifying us). She is staring at the walls in the house and outside on the porch. She is pulling her hair out when she is in her kennel, which used to be her favorite place to be.
Change is inevitable but it is HARD!!!
My best example of this change quote is in the education world. In my last year as principal at an elementary school (the best school in the world, in my humble opinion), we began using a new evaluation system. Talk about change! We went from what used to be what I call a two-ply system of “Meets Expectations” or “Are you still breathing?” to a four-ply rubric --- the Framework for Teaching---that actually focused intensively on teacher growth (Danielson, 2007). Teachers and administrators alike went from “freaking out” to “figuring it out” together. I won’t lie----it was hard!! But the rock solid teachers in our school often said things like, “This is really hard but I can actually see where I need to grow” and “I never got this kind of feedback before” or “I love having the conversation with you ABOUT my teaching.”
I like to emphasize that the change is hard for administrators as well. We struggled to get into classrooms more than we ever had before. We struggled to make all the evidence we collected factual and not based on our own opinions and biases. We struggled to have conversations WITH teachers, as opposed to the former practice in many schools of telling teachers what they had done right or wrong in their class. By learning together, teachers and principals said they had been changed, as long as the culture of the school supported this change and evaluation was now being done WITH teachers and not TO teachers.
A dear friend and colleague sent me this video clip yesterday and I found myself nodding like a bobbing dog hanging from the rearview mirror. I couldn’t help but think of all the things this video clip brings to light about learning being done by the learner, biases, the fact that knowledge does not equal understanding and how unlearning something we have always done can take a long time but may well be worth the effort.
Check out The Backwards Brain Bicycle!!
Just for today, perhaps we can think about the way change has enhanced our lives after we have given it a chance to settle in. I would love to hear your comments on how you perceive this video.
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