My teaching and learning are a lot of Winnie the Pooh. Well, Winnie and his group of friends. Some days I feel like Tigger, bouncing off the walls with energy, multi tasking, writing lectures, emailing, and making checklists of the other hundred things I have to accomplish. Or sometimes it’s a Piglet day. I have no idea what is going on, I have a meeting or a process I need to figure out and don’t know where to start (I actually do, everything starts with an IT ticket). Some days I’m Owl, wearing glasses and saying smart things, others I’m Eeyore, dragging through the days I forget to bring my coffee mug.
Even though I am the sometimes bumbling leader, I try to remain positive and upbeat. It’s really is interesting going through the educational experience with students while I am both a teacher and a student myself. Not only do I learn new and interesting things every day, but as I write my dissertation and study for my exams, I am really going through the same process. I am learning a new job, with many complex facets that somehow all need to work in harmony and make sure everything runs smoothly in all my classes. It turns out it is a lot easier said than done, and I am always asking colleagues for ideas, advice, and directions (I tend to get lost a lot).
But no matter what happens, doom and gloom or positivity and energy, something fantastic happens. Christopher Robin (or in this analogy, my students) walk in, and everything is amazing in the Hundred Acre Woods (or Advanced Excel). As one of my colleagues said, and I appreciate every day, this truly is the best job in the world. Not because sometimes it’s easy and sometimes its hard, but it is very, very rewarding. To see students excel at Excel, accomplish things they never thought possible, or discover something new and wonderful is really what makes it all worth it.
I think that is a humbling thought. I don’t really know more than my students, or if I do, my job is to download what I know to them. What I am really there for is to avoid getting my waist stuck in Rabbit’s hole so we can have another amazing day of learning. Maybe provide some leadership and guidance, and the tools to accomplish things they never thought possible. I am always impressed by what the students bring to the table, and to paraphrase a textual semantic analysis example we used this week in class they really are “wicked smart”.
So as we all have our adventures, create new games like Pooh sticks or analytics dashboards, great things are going to happen.