Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Balcony or Basement?

Today my school District had an inspirational meeting planned. All of the teachers in our county had to meet for this meeting early this morning.  First, 1 of our Asst. Superintendents spoke, next our Superintendent, followed by our Teacher of the Year.  They all spoke very nicely and had lovely things to say, but it was not to be the "Main Event"!  --Let me take a time-out to let you know what was happening on the sidelines, during these speeches.  A teenager, dressed in baggy clothes, hat, and basketball was roaming around the huge room where this meeting was taking place.  At first, we thought perhaps he wants to play basketball?  The room converts into a gymnasium.  But he kept moving, and I needed to pay attention. Little did I know he was making the rounds around the room.  He made it back over to our section, where he preceded to have a  pass with one of our P.E. Teachers and his basketball.  
This was all during the lovely speeches.  

Can you guess what happened next? You got it.  The teenager roaming around the room, looking out of place, was actually our Guest Speaker, Dr. Adolf Brown, . If you get a moment, go to his site. Google him, watch some of his videos on youtube.  It will be well worth your time. 

He told us as he went around the room, that he was "assessing our character"  Who you are when no one is looking.  He told us of many people in the room who helped him, or spoke to him and so on.  His point?  He was dressed as a 'kid' who needed help!  Just like any one of our students.  He started out as one of those kids.  Single mom, his older brother murdered, and in his own words, he was the "smelly" kid.  It wasn't until the 3rd grade, that his teacher took the time to get to know him and make him feel successful. *By the way, she was there today as well, and she was the person to introduce him*

He continued to talk about BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS with our students.  Get to know them! Watch how you speak to them; and understand that you may want to raise the bar when it comes to High Expectations, but remember to "level the playing field" for those who have less than others. EVERY student needs to go into your metaphorical "wheel barrow".  There are students who are easy to teach, and will fit into your wheel barrow with ease.  It's the ones that are not easy, that need US the most. 

Finally, he motivated us to "Get out of the Basement"  and "Get on the Balcony".  Basement people are those negative people who can find the bad in anything.  His example was that when he was in First grade, his teacher walked by him holding her nose, because remember he was the "smelly" kid.  He joked, but after that moment, her actions gave the rest of the class permission to tease him.  They called him "doo-doo" Brown.  I can't even imagine. Can you?  But it's the truth. His expression was 'Real Talk'

Don't be a basement teacher.  Don't be a basement person!  Get on the Balcony! Be positive.  Thank goodness, His 3rd grade teacher was on the Balcony and found a way to get through to him and gave him what he needed.

It's easier to complain, and whine, but I am determined to be "A Balcony" person/teacher this year.  Thank you Dr. Brown for getting me inspired for this year!

Dr. Adolph Brown Master Teacher, Motivational Speaker, Theorist and Practitioner


1 comment:

  1. AWESOME! I don't use that word very much! I wish I had been there to see him. Thank you for sharing his message!
    Owl Things First


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