So, I haven’t made much noise lately, mostly because work and life has been outrageously busy. No, I mean OUTRAGEOUSLY busy. I’m a teacher by day, but have spent close to three weeks this term out of the classroom in workshops, at courses and working on a variety of special programs. It’s a busy time of year, and I don’t remember a year busier!
One of the things I have been involved in is a “Classroom Teachers Aspiring to Leadership” course, which is both a preparation for teachers wanting to take the next step up the career path, and just a good way to better understand your own role and impact in a school community. Next week I have a two day conference where I will give a presentation on what I have learnt about myself during this course. Part of the requirement is to provide a hand out that helps explain my “hero’s journey” (Don’t you love the inspirational hogwash that gets wrapped around management courses?), and some physical representation (A symbol? A metaphor?) of that journey. I have it all pretty much in hand, now, and thought I would share what I am doing, because I think it is pretty darn cool!
My handout is pretty straightforward, with lots of boxes of information, quotes, and ideas that have resonated with me during my participation in the course. And for my artefact, I decided I would create a Choose Your Own Adventure book. As a kid I loved to read Pick-A-Path, Choose Your Own Adventure and, later, Fighting Fantasy books. I think these types of books are a pretty good metaphor for my journey, as they require you to make choices and decisions to achieve an outcome and the success of your story will depend on the choices you made.
My Choose Your Own Adventure book, Quest of the Aspirant, looks a lot like the original game books, and I am really happy with the way it turned out. It took some hunting around the web to find the right font, but I got there eventually! The book itself isn’t actually a choose your own adventure, but instead a “workbook” with questions about what makes a good leader, and spaces for writing responses. Questions and blank pages are actually two more metaphors for my journey, but I won’t get into that here! I used Lulu to print up a set of these books so that the people I am presenting to can each have a copy to fill out themselves.