An Educator’s Interpretation
Last summer, a very close friend of mine took our Life & Leadership Potentials Training, the first of four modules that comprise iPEC's Accredited Coach Training Program.
After completing the module, she commented that one of her greatest takeaways came from understanding where our interpretations (i.e. perceptions) come from and how to more quickly see that there’s always another perspective.
Why did this particular piece stand out above all the other hours of content? Well, for her specifically, it’s because she’s a teacher at an elementary school with at-risk youth and immediately recognized that she could use this new-found knowledge in two ways:
1. To better understand what her students are thinking and how their perspective might be holding back, or fueling, their learning. She realized she now had additional tools and skills to shift even a young child’s perspective (which they very willingly do!); and, she saw how she could use that higher-performing student’s perception to develop other students.
2. To prevent herself from personally getting caught-up in the interpretations that can create gossip and added stress in a school’s social network.
The social network of a school is very strong; for some schools, this fuels performance, while in others, it breeds gossip and commiseration. And, let’s face it, commiseration is contagious because it can feel good to vent and not feel alone, but it almost never leads anywhere because the focus is not on improving the situation - it’s just blowing off steam and finding someone else who agrees, so you feel better about your view and feelings.
For many reasons – her understanding of interpretations being a big one – this year has been one of the best my friend has had in several years. The students seem calmer, happier, and more willing to dive into their work. And, that's because she’s not as stressed, and she's added tools to build bridges and connections with them. The school “chatter” seems like it’s quieter – even though she knows it probably isn’t. She’s just not hearing it the same way anymore.
Imagine what would happen if this little bit of knowledge caught fire in our classrooms and schools, nationally. Imagine Coach Centric Educators™ helping each other, and their students, to expand their views and focus on skill development – not fact memorization – all taking place in a supportive, collaborative, and anabolic school culture.
Let’s stop imagining; let’s make it happen!
Live on Fire!
D. Luke Iorio, CPC, PCC, ELI-MP
President & CEO
Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC)