Today marked the first day of the Teacher Development Conference in Leeds, our final week on the Summer Institute. We were greeted by an amazingly catchy playlist, which I have taken note of, and a lively atmosphere. What a wake-up call, who needs a Latte when you have a party at 9 am.
All jokes aside, what a fantastic day. The speeches, on occasion, brought me to tears. We heard Brett, and a number of other inspirational people, talk about the important “Impact” (I have chosen to emphasise this) that we can have on young people.
Each of the people we heard from were educators in their own right. Some of them teachers, some of them writers. Nonetheless, regardless of whether or not they had once called a dusty classroom home, they were educators of the “local” and “wider” community.
What is most prominent when listening to these speakers is their clear “growth mindset,” or “Grit.” They had each faced challenges; some faced educational inequality due to socioeconomic backgrounds, others, had to take on an ocean. Let’s just say; the ocean did not win.
Nevertheless, these people did not “swim
” (couldn’t resist) their way through adversity. It was hard, it was draining, and on occasion, it seemed impossible. This is the part I need to learn from them; it may be hard, draining, or seem impossible; so what? It will always be impossible if I do not give it my best shot, and more.
So what have I learned from the opening speeches? To put simply, people have the ability to become a “force of nature.” And this person is about to give it his best shot to join the storm.