Here We Go!

It was supposed to be earlier, the beginning. And then Mom needed surgery. And then she fell. And autumn was gone.

As I launch this new adventure, I am intensely aware of my luck in being able to take time to care for an ailing parent. I have my wits about me (mostly), I have a supportive family (completely), and I have the time I need to do this kind of thing from the ground up.

So what are we doing here?

We can all see the world's faults, the chasms between the world's people, the challenges of families in our schools, the shortcomings of students in our classrooms. But it is sometimes harder to see that we are lucky to be engaged in a career — part art, part craft, and some part just plain luck — that by its nature affects the world for the better.

But who cares for teachers? It's not a new question, but I'm hopeful I can lead others to new answers. Often, we look for answers by learning and developing more of what we already know. But often teachers have told me that we don't need another book for the shelf — we need time and direction to think about the bookcase and the house itself and their condition, the way it's holding up, whether our bookcases need a new paint job or new bookcases entirely. And, by the way, what's the shelf life (ha!) of a bookcase in the first place?

Those are the questions I'm hoping this new venture helps teachers, or more generally “school people,” to consider. I have no answers for teachers — there are no easy answers and I'm not that presumptuous — but I have a fair amount of experience in helping teachers to pursue answers on their own, from leading a decade of workshops for beginning teachers to working with teachers who have hit roadblocks in their own careers.

So think about joining this adventure. There are no guarantees where you'll end up, but I'm pretty sure the journey will leave you more optimistic, more energized, and more fearless about what lies ahead.