I came to know Ron Clark like 10 years ago when The Essential 55 came out. I loved it - his ideas about teaching and learning and teaching kids to be good people were very inspiring. Now he's out with another equally amazing book that is more focused on the organization as a whole. He talks about how all the people in our schools operate under different personas: The Runners, Joggers, Walkers, Riders, and Drivers and how by knowing all of your people, you can accelerate your school (bus) towards success rapidly!
This post is going to cover:
Chapter 8: Say Hello
Chapter 9: Sit with the Runners
Chapter 10: Ask for Help
Let's get to it!
You know, it seems like a little thing, but saying hello makes such a big difference. To me, this is all about, as Ron Clark mentions, seeing the other people in the room. Everyone wants to know that they're seen, everyone wants to know that they're important. Saying hello when you first run into someone is such an easy and meaningful way to do so!
|Starts with Hello!|
Have you ever thought that you are starting to look like your best friend or your significant other? Have you ever wondered that you were turning into the people you spend the most time with? Well that's the point in chapter 9 - Sit with the Runners. The Runners are identified as passionate, happy, driven people, so it only makes sense that we would want to sit with them. While being in their presence, we are naturally uplifted. The people we sit with, hang out with, spend our time with - those are the people who have influence over us!
This chapter reminds me of a blog post I read early in the school year - Find Your Marigolds. Colleen, that was you who shared that, or was it Miss G? Anyways, It's all about how when gardening, its helpful to plant Marigolds next to your other crops because they ward off pests and other harmful weeds. The same can be true in teaching - we have to find our Marigolds, those Runners, those teachers who inspire, motivate, and problem solve with us, rather than spend our time with others who might complain, resist change, and focus too much time and energy on the negative. Who is a runner in your life that uplifts you?
Ask for Help
"Sometimes it's great to ask for direction, for help, or for clarity. It's not seen as a weakness. Instead, it makes it clear that you care enough about a project or a task to be sure you get it right." Chew on those words a bit....it makes it clear that you care enough about a project or task to be sure you get it right. In chapter 10, Clark discusses how asking for help is actually a sign of strength, rather than weakness, which is what many people think.
When I began as a Literacy Coach a few years ago, I was new to elementary and primary reading. I could tell you tons of stuff about intermediate and middle school readers, but primary? No clue. I always went to our primary experts, and I still do when I want to bounce ideas or get feedback, or ask for clarification. Let it be known that doing this takes so much vulnerability, which makes it a strength, not a weakness.
So, what can we take away from these three chapters? Say hello to your colleagues. Sit with the Runners and naturally be uplifted! Ask for help when you need it - we all do our best when work together!
Be sure to stop by Theresa's blog, Learn Teach, Grow on Wednesday for our next post - she'll be sharing about chapters 11 and 12!