The Intimacy of Colleagues in Common

 There is an intimacy found with colleagues who are passionate about literacy and children’s learning that I find nowhere outside these circles.  When we sit together and share our learning, our thoughts, our resources and concerns, the talk often stretches from minutes into hours. Our discourse takes twists and turns that lead us to new awarenesses, new understandings, and new takes on how to reach students entrusted to our care.  If people understood these discussions that often take place at happy hours, lunches, after school in classrooms, or when we encounter one another at the grocery store, they would warm to the embrace of our public schools.  These discussions are all about how to best serve the students in our lives.  They are about what matters most.

“Let’s quit talking shop” a colleague asserts. And certainly we  can also connect over family, marraiges, travel and other social events. But we can do that with others too. And truthfully – everything is “shop” with this group. We learn how to improve our practice by reflecting on the truths of our personal experiences.  And there is noone – not spouse, nor family nor friends outside the world of education – who can connect on this level to the important work we do. I wonder if people in industry connect over the work they do. I hope so, for there is little so rewarding as being heard and growing one’s world view through discussions with cherished colleagues, partners and collaborators whose practice has helped to shape my own across more than a decade.

Rufus Jones, Quaker historian & theologian once wrote, “I pin my hopes to quiet processes and small circles, in which vital and transforming events take place.”

Give yourself time for these quiet circles and exchanges.  It would is there that real change takes place.

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About Be Strong. Be Courageous. Be You

Principal at the Sweetest Little School by the Sea at the south end of Los Angeles Harbor. Working to make the world a little more awesome.
This entry was posted in Child Matters, Learning, Passion for teaching, SOL2016, thoughts, Truths and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to The Intimacy of Colleagues in Common

  1. onathought says:

    Awesome – I love my circle of colleagues… and I agree — so important.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Glenda Funk says:

    If I were to cease shop talk, I’d have nothing to say. My very being is inextricably tied up in what I do as a teacher; it is who I am. Ienjoy talking to like-minded colleagues, both in my building and online. They all mean so much to me and enrich my world.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. mayawoodall says:

    Yes, I agree. These connections are so powerful. Thanks for sharing and for reminding us to seek those small circles.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lisa R says:

    There’s nothing like talking “lit-talk” with passionately committed teachers. How lucky you are to have such a circle.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. franmcveigh says:

    I don’t remember where and when we studied “group size” but I know Jim Burke speaks to it in some of his work. When we want diverse ideas and need to “brainstorm possibilities” we really want large groups so that ideas can emerge. That’s one reason that colleagues can truly meet across the miles in virtual time, although we may most treasure those “teaching points” delivered so eloquently over dinner and adult beverages! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • daywells says:

      The psychology of groups is also an interest. We are so fortunate to get to study together across miles – these are such rich learning and connecting opportunities as well!

      Like

  6. jarhartz says:

    Dayna,
    I just caught up on your posts for the month. Love your words. Keep writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Having like-minded colleagues — in-person or a PLN from afar — certainly helps us grow in so many ways.

    Liked by 1 person

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