Traces of Existence

#SOL16 Day 16Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 5.11.16 PM

As I’ve already mentioned, I work at 5 schools in 5 days.  There are certainly pros and cons to that set up, but one of the consequences that concerns me is the adage “out of sight, out of mind.” In a few of my buildings I don’t have an established space-only a corner of the teachers’ room or a  table in a student services room.  In those buildings where I do have a space, I share it with other itinerants.  So for the 4 days I am not around, the only physical evidence of my existence is the desk and materials I leave behind.

Today I snapped a picture as I packed up and wondered wIMG_4931hat my impressions would be if this were my co-workers’ desk.  What interests her?  What is she working on?  What does she value?  Is she always this cluttered? Does she ever change her calendar? What does this space say about her?

There’s a lot of talk about our carbon footprints, but this year I’ve thought a lot about my coaching footprint.  When I’m out of sight, are my teaching ideas out of mind? Does the spirit of my collaboration live on?  What do I leave behind at the end of each day that could  buttress the teaching and learning in my buildings? What words or deeds did I offer another that might offer lasting sustenance?

Are the traces of my existence meaningful?

It’s hard to know. We plant our seed and let it grow.





6 thoughts on “Traces of Existence

  1. I really liked your reflections today. It’s a good reminder for all of us to think about our footprint. Your desk is a lot more clean and organized than mine every was!

  2. I loved being able to spy on your desk. I see with my little eye several items of familiarity: Crenshaw, Fish in a Tree, The Summer of Letting Go. And, some that have piqued my curiosity: Writing Pathways and Close Writing. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I love the line – There’s a lot of talk about our carbon footprints, but this year I’ve thought a lot about my coaching footprint. As I read this, I thought of Debbie Miller who says you should stand at the door, look at your room and see what is important to you. You are doing that with your desk! As I read your last line, I thought of the seeds we planted in soil in 3rd grade. For days, we saw nothing….then the plant peaked up!! Keep your coach footprints going!!

  4. Interesting musings. As someone who for the first two years of teaching had two and a half days a week in two schools, I never gave a thought to what I left behind for the days I was not in the building. Don’t think I want to think about it now.

  5. Coaching footprints! I love this. This reflection really resonated. I am about 2 months into my instructional coaching job – at two buildings, and now I wish I had a picture of what I left behind… Looking at my space to make some conjectures about me — that is interesting. Then — the coaching footprints. I am a very temporary coach — so I often wonder if I’m making any footprints at all. Thanks for sharing this!

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