When are you too old to be presenting ideas to teachers/educators? That’s where my head is right now.
Part of me wants to be sitting on a seawall looking at the waves come in. The other part of me wonders if I should be looking at options to talk with educators about “being the best teacher they can be.” Of course there is this little voice (actually a very loud and boisterous voice) in my head that keeps reminding me that I haven’t been in the classroom since the middle of the pandemic. And, “nobody wants to hear an old guy who hasn’t even been in the classroom lately! “
Non-teacher friends tell me that I still have a lot to offer and, heck, “you’ve written three books on the subject!” And so the question sits in the air – “How relevant are you old man?” In my younger days I would see old guys roll into the room for a PD (professional development) and I would immediately question the currency of whatever they were about to tell us. I mean they “haven’t been in the classroom in 10 years (eye roll)”
I want to be leading the pack. I really do. I still have thoughts about the teaching profession and I want to help teachers. But will they want to follow me if they are concerned about the miles that have passed by since I was presenting new and cutting edge teaching ideas and strategies? The list of things that I”m concerned with include (but are not limited to):
- students experiencing inquiry and exploration;
- students feeling cared for and safe;
- teachers feeling cared for and safe;
- students, and their teachers, given opportunities to make mistakes without fear of retribution;
- math classrooms where all of the above items are the norm.
As I look to options on where I can go from here, I know that I don’t want to be in the classroom every day. I also don’t want to work for a school or district coaching teachers or doing other work simply to “be active.” I do want to help students and I do want to help teachers. But I want to be very flexible with my time. In thinking about these seemingly disparate things [helping students/teachers but not having a job helping students/teachers], I came up with a list of things I could do, that includes:
- Writing posts on this blog that come out regularly with a set content calendar.
- Creating podcasts that come out regularly with a set content calendar.
- Creating video that comes out regularly with a set content calendar.
- Speaking at education themed conferences.
- Speaking to teachers/admin on professional development days.
As I get ready to turn 65 (and the Medicare hounds are kept at bay) I do have things to offer. I do have ideas to spread. And, I do want to actively help students and teachers. So I think it’s time to create a content calendar. Since I’m starting this in the middle of the school year I can start with ideas that focus on keeping the learning going. Then transition to plans for wrapping up the school year before I start with thoughts on getting ready to start the school year. Once I have a content calendar I will decide the medium I want to use. And then I just need to adhere to it.
The plan of attack will be the next post. Stay tuned and wish me luck.