Friday, November 22, 2013

Jingle Jangle Goes The Keys...

Today was a pretty typical day for me.  Up early, washer loaded and laundry folded.  Kids breakfast served and then off to McDonald's for my 'free' coffee, via my husbands full coffee card.
So, today started as all Friday's do.  And by mid-morning I had already locked myself out of my office.  TWICE.  Again, another normality in my hair-brained world.

As I went to seek out the custodian to ask for help the second time, I realized that his ring of keys was well stacked.  How does he seem to move with the weight of those keys on his hips?  I'm positive I would feel off kilter and would be out of sorts.  Because he knows me, and he gets my issue with my silly door, he does what I ask and carefully tosses me the keys and wishes me luck.  Again, for the second time!

Now, the fact that he knows that I know which key to use off that giant ring makes this little transaction easier for the both of us.  But, if I had to go back into the past, it wouldn't be like this.  Well, the forgetfulness would be there, maybe not as frequent, but it's there.  Instead, he had to give me a lesson on which key to use, for which door I had miraculously seemed to lock myself out of.  I can even think of an occasion or two where I had to walk back and ask for 'another lesson' on which key again..."I, uh, stopped to talk to so-and-so and I accidentally forgot which key was 'the one' along the way."  Yep... I'll admit it ~ some days that is where I'm at!

The custodian I work with is great.  He never gives me a hard time for being so forgetful or for somehow locking myself out.  He is approachable and never seems too busy to help.

I can learn a lot from that man.  I can learn that even though I have been given the keys to help others open doors and to be a problem solver, I still need to work on my approach.  In my ETFO additional qualification part two course in Integration of Information and Computer Technology, I continue to learn the tools and add to my key chain, if you will.  Each day in this course, my fellow peers unlock a door for me, and even give me a gentle reminder (thanks Rod, I needed that tutorial... Not as smart as I think I am!) which helps me.

All this learning and building my keychain is great.  My take aways continue to be too many to count, (this week alone I learned about Easybib, IXL Math, and thought more concretely about the technology 'growth' my own school needs) but it's only half the equation.  In math equations we see the equals sign that balances both sides of such equations.  Having the knowledge of the tools only makes you, in my opinion, half the technology support/leader.  The other half has to come in how you share your keys to those in need.  Do you simply hand them over, providing way more access than necessary and cause information overload?  Do you worry that if you give the keys away to those in need that they will somehow lose or misuse the information that you shared?  Or, are you like my awesome custodian, and give a lesson, offer support and encouragement, and provide hits here and there as needed?

I have a long way to go in my people approach.  Sometimes I think I'm being clear, and I am.  Other times... wow... eyes glass over and I know I've given too much too soon, or haven't been trusting enough and withheld info just because I can.  So, even though my learning continues to grow and shape, I feel that my jingle jangle still needs work.  It will come.  I know it.  I have a good teacher (thank you Mr. McDonald)!

Thanks for reading!
Leave me a comment below and let me know where you are building your key chain.  What type of jingle jangle do you approach others with?

1 comment:

  1. I left a comment here a week or so ago, I know and somehow, it was not posted as I had not been logged into Wordpress! I wish I could remember what I wrote!
    But this analogy, of the keys, is a great one. Sometimes we just need to know which key unlocks which door to learning for each student. We have to remember what keys we already have, and use them at the right time. We need our support people too, as we have to work as a team! Thanks to your Custodian for always being on the team! Who else is on your team? Who will be joining your team when the course is over?