by Ross Peters, Managing Partner.
Sometimes I get jealous. It is not my best characteristic.
I get jealous of original creators, grand designers, audacious planners, brave playwrights, brilliant poets, superlative musicians, and always relevant, inventive, student-focused educators. I do not ever wish such people anything but success, and I do not want to be them specifically – I do, however, want to join them. This may be more of a distraction than an inspiration. Jealousy of this sort limits our view of the learning to be had from others.
Perhaps wisdom begins with a seed of recognition of the strengths of others that transcend our own. Maturity, then, is the desire to surrender to the idea of personal limits and drive toward the impact we can make toward the good in our environments.
Virtuosity is not the goal or a set of abilities about which to be jealous. Our goal should instead be movement toward things more valuable, more lasting than ourselves alone.
This thread of thinking came to mind for me from several directions in the pieces linked below (and in one coming soon from one of a number of super bright people at EXPLO, Leah van der Sluis – more on her thinking in the next newsletter). In this week’s, read how EXPLO’s Greg Cooper continues to dig into a metaphor between school transformation and astrophysics. His deft navigation of this space identifies a bridge for us that elucidates both successful educational change processes and complex scientific concepts. He takes two things that often elude our grasp and makes each somehow more approachable. A neat trick.
Great students are discerning and broad-minded thieves, taking what they learn and making meaning of it within the world they find forever strewn around them.
Dave Hamilton’s piece reveals something I admire about his work: the persistent openness to being a great learner. All learning is, to a degree, an act of theft. There are more graceful ways to explain it, but at least for today, let’s make it theft. Great students are discerning and broad-minded thieves, taking what they learn and making meaning of it within the world they find forever strewn around them. Dave shares in his piece a bit of his bounty from his recent participation in OPPI. Read carefully; (sort of like “casing the joint”) and steal whatever might benefit you and the people around you.