As an awkward freshman in high school, I found myself drowning in a sea of loneliness midway through the year. In reality, I had plenty of friends a great community around me, but those adolescent years hit me hard and I was yearning for close friends. I remember talking with my dad on the way to Best Buy one afternoon when he shared a nugget of advice his father had given him many years prior. He said, "You know, if you want to make more friends, be silent and listen. Really listen. People love to be listened to. It's the key to building lasting relationships"
Years later, as a young teacher, I had was talking with a friend and mentor who had come to the classroom a long and fruitful career in the private sector. While talking about our roles on a committee for our school district, she noted, "This isn't life, it's business. In business, if you show up to a lot of meetings and have nothing of value to add, they eventually stop inviting you to the meetings. If I'm on a steering committee, I assume I was appointed because they want my opinion."
As I sit in committee meetings every day now, I am realizing that both my dad and my colleague were right. To thrive in this world of bureaucracy, politics, funding partnerships, and leadership, you must float in a delicate balance of the two. Proverbs 18:13 says, "If one gives an answer before he hears, it is his folly and shame." It is not an admonishment to never give an answer. Instead, it is sage advice to listen and think before you speak. I'm learning that to thrive as a contributing member in collaborative, large-scale projects, it is apparent that one must say more without speaking more. In the information age, as we are inundated with more information than any individual could possible digest, it is an increasingly valuable skill to be able to filter through the muck and identify truly valuable nuggets to add to the conversation.
GE Foundation Leadership Summit
Leveraging Innovative Technologies for Learning
Texas Open Innovation Conference
Mar 27 - 29
Emerging Innovations in Education
Authentic Learning through PBL
FFT Leading & Learning
Connecting Global Education with the Tennessee Valley
reMake Education Summit
Sonoma County, CA
Keynote, Making Making Work in Education
National Governor's Association
Teaching Governor's to Code
US Dept of Education
Round Table with Secretary John King.
K-12 Pathways for CS
Ed Foo--Making in Education (breakout session)
K-12 Education Panels
Strategies for Reducing the Racial Gap in Computing
Boston Museum of Science
Teaching with Toys--Using Robotics as a Gateway for Computer Science
US Dept of Education
MSP Computer Science Proposition
§ The Great Miscalculation
§ Five Facts About Failing
§ Oh! That's STEM?
§ My Mom Isn't
an Engineer and That's