Building Sandcastles

Last week I was on the beach enjoying an afternoon with the family, building an awesome sandcastle village. Great teamwork was happening. I was building the main castle while my daughter built the huts crabs would stay in. Then suddenly a wave come crashing in and threatens the front of the village. We hunkered down and built a deeper moat around the village, but eventually the waves did their work and eroded the front of our creation. As always, by the next morning there were no signs the masterpiece ever existed.

Do you ever feel like this in education? We work hard to build something, then the new tide comes in and knocks it down? In my 19 years in education I have seen an evolution, but not at the pace it should be. So, what do we do to stop knocking down our own walls?

I don’t have the answers, but I know as a leader I am going to change my perspective. Are the castles we build gone just because the new initiative has a different name? We have to stop worrying about names and acronyms and seek to make connections between the old and the new. In Professional Capitol, Hargraves and Fullen talk about blending the best of the old with taking risks and implementing new ideas.

By changing the way we look at our sandcastles we can enjoy the beauty of what we are building in the moment and look forward to tomorrow where we will get the opportunity to build a better one using the experience we gained from the last. The new sandcastle will be even better if we take the time to reflect upon our process and visualize the  creation we are going to make with our fresh palette.