Today we had a field trip to Stonefields school for the Manaiakalanai School leaders study tour.
Their principal Sarah Martin did a seminar about collaboration and communication that I got a lot out of. As the principal, she obviously spends a lot of time with her staff, and with an ever-growing number of staff and having 11 new teachers this year, she used a lot of strategies to get everybody on board and on an equal playing field. Along with that huge number of staff comes with collaborative issues. How can people work together when they all are so different? How can we prevent elephants in the room becoming conflicts? How do we deal with conflict when it arrises?
One thing she talked about was having a shared vision of where you want to be. What she did with her staff, which I plan to now do with my students in our own way, was get them to draw where they think they are now in terms of their collaboration, and then where they want to be. This gave them a vision and gave the staff strategies for when there are elephants in the room.
Food for thought...
Where do I think I am with my collaborative efforts?
The person on the left is me, with a strong connection to and from my mentor teacher. I recognise that I only have bonds with some of the other staff members of my school, and that there are some people I do not collaborate with.
Goal for the future?
Get to know everyone! I need to build relationships with those people that I may not necessarily see everyday - people in the junior syndicate and support staff in particular. This will build my collaborative community as I can then talk to these people about anything and give and receive support!