Queen of the Ivory Tower.
After two days of commentary on comics, television, and film, we are back to the education content, True Believers!
This is pretty straightforward stuff. We have three new teachers on the Tenth Grade team, and meet weekly to discuss progress and amend the lesson plans. Those meetings are brief, and often decently useful, even to me. It’s just good practice to meet with people who have the same job, doing the same thing, and compare notes. When an exchange of methods and practice happens…well, that’s really useful.
However, to profit from this, you actually need to arrive at said meetings.
We have one team member, for whom that is not going to be a thing. It has pretty much been said that it will just not be a part of that teacher’s overall process, but that we should in fact keep planning lessons and providing materials. A large amount of the team is a bit upset by this, for understandable reasons. I mean…no one plans my lessons or week for me…and if they do, it’s because I showed up at a meeting to contribute to that plan, for better or for worse.
I’ve never had an “out of classroom” position, so I don’t really have an idea of how demanding it might be. I do know that by definition they are not classroom teaching positions, and it has long been my opinion that educators leave the classroom for reasons that have to do with an inability to do the day to day business of the classroom. That’s not a cheap shot…some people are far better suited to doing the out of classroom jobs that I am not.
Still…it often generates a kind of “Ivory Tower” mentality. An idea of being separate and above the rank and file….apart from that group of teachers. It often makes it hard for those educators to descend back into our world. That’s what the art today is about. Case in point…I go to meetings. I don’t miss them, regardless of the fact that some of them are less than interesting, or less than productive. So does the overwhelming majority of our team.
When there is one member who doesn’t…regardless of the reasons, whether they are good or not…it generates a kind of resentment. Like that person doesn’t have to play by the rules, or is somehow exempt from certain expectations. Those kinds of feelings are bad for the person they are directed towards, and also bad for the team. When that happens, other team members tend to push unrelated and unexpected limits, testing the boundaries.
As the senior member of the team, it’s kind of on me to take the High Road, and do my best to make things work. As a result, today I sought out the Ivory Tower Teacher, and shared lesson plans, materials, and methods. I’m not going to say it didn’t sting a bit…it did. I also realize that I don’t have to walk in that person’s boots, and a good leader is going to work with their team, not against them. It would be the height of jerk moves to with hold help from someone that was too proud to admit they needed it, at a cost to those under them. You know…the students?
I’m not going to say that I’m okay with the different criteria for time usage here…because I’m not. I am going to assert that the person in question does come down from the Ivory Tower once per day, to do the same job as me. I have to respect that action.
Maybe, along the way, I can learn to like the person. Maybe not. If not…I still have to take the High Road, which is often hard to find.
The art should be a clear allusion to that metaphor. Our hero on an Eternian Battle Ram, ascending into the air, very much taking the High Road, with Pony alongside. In Panel Two, the Dragon Queen of the Ivory Tower, boycotting the meeting that Edu-Knights should attend. Pretty unsubtle material today.
At least Special Amazon isn’t in the Ivory Tower any more.