Monday, January 18, 2016

You are a Skid Loader

If someone came up to you and said, "Fill in the blank: Being a teacher is a lot like ________." We all know what you would say. I mean, it's obvious. We all know the answer is "skid loader." No, serious! Think about it. As teachers, day in and day out, we are basically skid loaders.  A skid loader is a powerful, yet compact machine. Just like teachers. Skid Loaders have a wide variety of "attachments" such as scooper, land sculptor, fence installer, truss boom , backhoe, trencher, snowblower, barrel grabber, dozer blade, sweeper, trencher, forks, tree saw, stump grinder, sand bagger, and the list goes on and on. How amazing is this machine! Wow. Yes, it is truly a versatile work horse. Just like teachers! Thing about the different "attachments" we change in and out of each day: teacher, coach, counselor, advisor, mentor, wisdom giver, common sense checker, friend, facilitator, author, actor, lawyer, cheerleader, technician, detective, doctor, and the list goes on and on. Just think about how many different types of things we do each day. Yes, we are truly a skid loader. We are the skid loaders of eduction. Sometimes it's hard to "move" (motivate) a pile of dirt (student) but luckily, we are skid loaders and can move that pile of dirt with no problem. Have you ever driven a skid loader? Well, if you do and you are on grass, be careful! If you turn too sharp, you will chew up the grass and ruin it. Just like in teaching, if you lash out or react too quickly, without giving it thought and careful consideration, you may destroy or ruin the "grass" (student) so make sure you think! Don't just wrench on the controls and dig up 4 inches worth of dirt. Easy that beast to the direction you want to go and execute your plan. 
So next time someone asks you to describe what being a teacher is like, just say, "I'm a skid loader."

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