I have been fond of using several phrases to describe myself. When students asked why I am always doing things different than my colleagues and changing what the school does, I would say: “if you aren’t making waves, then you aren’t kicking hard enough.” Then the superintendent called me a troublemaker in a meeting, and not in a funny, sarcastic way. That’s when a friend said “You’re not a troublemaker. You’re a trendsetter.”
I am the only one in my school using a Tablet PC to teach and today I finally got my wireless device
to work so my teaching was completely mobile. My kids didn’t know what to do. I put my PC on a kid’s desk so she could work the problem out for the class and it was like an alien just beamed in from Mars and landed on her notebook. She looked at the stylus like she had never picked up a pen in her entire life. As others realized what I did, there were whispers of disappointment and envy because she got to be the first one to write on it. Not sure what they are going to do when they have to start using Animoto, Prezis, and the Flipped Classroom.
I’m not a troublemaker. I get the ideas rolling and the wave of change started. I light the fire within my students to push themselves to do something they didn’t know they could do. This is going to cause problems for some of my colleagues. And, well, maybe it should.
I’m the fire starter.