Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Mutual Mind-shift

"Mr. Baumeyer, I just wanted to say that that thing is working out awesome in my class!"

"The rubric?"

"Yes! It is awesome. It helps so much. I really appreciate you taking the time to help me."

"You are a presence in the building, and I appreciate your help with that. And I mean that."

As I was filling a refrigerator with water bottles, this teacher stopped me.With my mind on the day's to-dos, I was caught off-guard but in the best possible way! I will take a moment to explain how this came about and what work we put in the past couple of weeks.

It all began with a concern over a child's grade in one class period. The teacher and I discussed the grade and what all calculated into the grade.

We started discussing the idea of creating a rubric for the three standards that were being scored. I had in my head to use a 3-2-1 scale: Mastered, Progressing, Not Proficient. This was a new idea for the teacher. She had a different idea and liked her system of deducting a point if a child was not working towards Mastery of a skill. This is when the first mind-shift had to take place, and that mind-shift had to come from me!

My gears were turning!!!
The teacher and I were working together, and I had to support her work while coaching towards a more efficient system of scoring. I had to acknowledge that she was comfortable with her system. How could I incorporate her work into what I was thinking? How could we synergize to create a Win-Win for both the teacher and the students?

Over the next week, we worked on creating the rubric. After a few drafts, we settled on a 3-column rubric and still used the Mastered, Progressing, Not Proficient column headings. We also incorporated her system of points into the rubric.

Now I am seeing a mind-shift from her! Taking the time to stop me to show excitement over the rubric is so great, and it confirms that the work we put into the rubric was time well-spent. I'm happy she finds value in the rubric. I'm glad it is helping her and her students because that is the goal.

Her words have inspired me. They are encouraging! Although I don't doubt that I'll be a good administrator, her words have shown me that what I do matters. With a shared vision and shared solutions, a culture of collaboration can be created and/or maintained.

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