Thursday, November 20, 2014

Sitting NEXT to Sara.

I don't know, what do YOU think?  

We all say it.  We truly know what we think, but we are too darned polite, afraid, bored, or simply unwilling to take the risk.  We'd rather listen to what someone else has to say and then judge our own response based upon theirs.  

Maybe it's to be nice and agree.
Maybe it's to be cantankerous and disagree, just for the sake of argument.
Maybe it's because it's easy to judge what the "appropriate" response is after watching/listening to someone else give it a go.  (A favorite ploy of the gifted student, I might add.)

Sometimes it's about protecting ego, other times it's about hiding something else.



The Te@chthought Blog Challenge prompt of the day:

 Nov 20 What is one life lesson that you are thankful for having learned?

  Our faculty room is long and narrow.  I mean REALLY long.  If you were to take one of those tables out of Hogwarts and put it in a windowless room with a fridge and two microwaves, well, you get the idea.  I'm also fairly claustrophobic, so I tend to sit where I can still look out the window in the door.  

Maybe it's our tendency as teachers to create a seating chart and stick with it -- but the seats in the faculty room at A Lunch are pretty much static.  I always sit across from Sara and next to Michael.  It's how we invented the importance of the "Two Spice American Blend"  (aka salt and pepper) to combat the endless recipes shared by the previously-mentioned Michael Jan that has 5 Spice Blend as the key ingredient.  So imagine my surprise -- or should I say discomfort -- when I arrived at lunch yesterday to find someone else in my seat.

Now don't get me wrong, I wasn't giving anyone that Churchlady's "You're in MY PEW" look, but I had had a pretty rough morning, and was looking forward to lunchtime to recharge my attitude for the remainder of the day.

I'm sure you're waiting with bated breath to find out how it all played out.  

Well, here's the skinny.  I wound up sitting NEXT to Sara and ACROSS from Michael.  And the change did not disappoint.  (Although I spent a fair amount of time worrying that I was sitting in Seth's seat, who, it seems, has recently given up eating lunch, possibly in an attempt to bank calories for Thanksgiving...)  I faced the creepy blank cinderblock wall, and away from the window.  And laughed harder than I've laughed in a long time.

One of my favorite assignments for gifted students is "Three Perspectives."  Choose a situation other than your own and examine the same scenario from three other points of view.  Over the years I've gotten some interesting analyses:

Premarital Sex as examined (in rhyme) by a young woman, an old man with regrets, and a pastor
A Clogged Toilet as examined by a maintenance man, a plunger, and the clogger.
A Winning Baseball Game as examined by homeplate, a trophy and a catcher.

You get the idea.  I'm all about trying to challenge kids to think differently, and viewing life with an open mind.

But I'm not willing to change my seat at lunch.

Life Lesson?  Perspective.   Just like Shawn Achor's baby unicorn of a sister, (see yesterday's blog post), viewing any given situation from a different perspective just might change the day.  Sometimes even for the better.

If you're willing to take the risk.

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