How passionate are educators?

This may seem like a cynical post, but I’ve run across several resources the past few days that  have me reflecting on my own passion as an educational leader and wondering how passionate we are as a profession.

You may have seen Ken Robinson’s first TED talk – Do Schools Kill Creativty? In this talk, Sir Ken shares his vision where adults and students alike pursue a life filled with passions. His book, The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything shares the same theme.

Earlier today, I ran across a post – 7 Harsh Truths They Don’t Tell You About Following Your Passions. Check out the post, but here is the list version of the main ideas:

  • Hard Work
  • Persistence
  • Fear
  • Confusion
  • Action
  • Determination
  • Fulfillment

Most people would find at least the first four ideas to be less than appealing. And I see this all the time in education – in the things I read online; in the people I encounter on a daily basis. I wonder, how many of us in education really have a passion for teaching and learning? How hard are we working? What is “working hard”? How persistent are we to improve and create opportunities for our students that reflect what we envision? Are we so deeply passionate about learning that we are willing to face the fear of failure? How do we deal with our confusion, especially in front of our peers and our students? How do our actions embody our passion? How determined are we when things don’t go as planned? How often do we feel fulfilled after the pursuit of our passion? I ask these questions about myself and about my profession.

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