The writing prompt for today is
Do you have a reputation?
What is it, and where did it come from?
Is it accurate? What do you think about it?
I’ve been in conversations about this today; there’s “stuff” going on around us, and we’re trying to figure it out. But in those conversations are reputations, how we expect people to behave based on past actions.
The thing is, we only see some of the actions of others, or “hear” about them. And we don’t know the stories behind the actions, or the rest of the story, before or after. We only have bits of information. As Lord Francis Jeffrey has said, “A good name, like good will, is got by many actions and lost by one.” So in our many conversations, it’s important to remember that we all act with the information we have, and that people are more than what we know.
In that respect, I tried to think of what my reputation might be, depending on one’s perspective.
So. I’m pretty quiet, very shy in fact, except when it comes to education. Then I’m passionate about teaching the whole child — personalized and including art, music, debate, etc. — and not assigning anyone a reputation based on a number, a test score. So I’m stubborn there, and vocal about its affects, which include less about what a child — or teacher — is, and more about our society’s growing lack of humanity or civility; rather we depend on numbers to prove something, instead of just having a conversation and observing what a child or teacher does, day in and day out in regards to learning and improving. So, some might see me as a devoted, innovative, and caring teacher who inspires her students, while others might see a stubborn tenacity to debate and research of those mandates that make data crunching the goal. Some will see a kind and collaborative teacher working with others to build a positive learning environment, while others will see a questioner, a debater, a reminder that other ways could be chosen. Some will see a diligent and focused learner, while others will see a workaholic. So, it depends. What I do know is this: my heart supports the underdog, my mind meanders down multiple paths to find the best ways, and whenever our school community is transparent and open to all views, that’s when we have found the best solutions for our students.
In reflection, I consider this quote from John Wooden: “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.” There will always be those who misunderstand our actions, but compassion towards them will diminish their unintended harm, and you will grow to understand them better. We only live once, so we must go boldly, and scatter seeds of kindness.
Live to make the world less difficult for each other. ~ George Eliot
About this post:
So. Our challenge, Day 15, for the #zerotohero WordPress blogging challenge is to write a post — to post on a writing prompt [ find them here ], which are those questions and statements presented to spur our imaginations on those days our minds fail us. Whenever your ideas stop sizzling, take a prompt and personalize it; twist it until it’s tuned to your needs. This was my twist.