The Seven Verbs of Teacher Leadership by Wendy Pillars article also focuses on teacher-leaders, but it does so using seven verbs that are more so a reflection of leadership characteristics. I would like to focus on the fact that these are all action verbs, each word represents something that we must do and possess that make you an effective person, educator, and leader.
The seven verbs are invite, take risks, grow, act, fail, catalyze, and respect.
Inviting is something that I must do more of; I often do not like to bombard or bother others with helping with tasks, but I must understand that collaborating is not bothering others, more of many minds working together to accomplish a common goal.
Taking risks is not an issue with me, but I usually take calculated risks, so I do not take a risk head-on; I know this can be a good and a bad concept, honestly, I would like to challenge myself to take more risks.
Growing is necessary for all areas of our life, we must constantly be put in situations or environments that foster our growth. We are not getting better if we stay the same. Acting is a must; execution in education is a part of who we are and what we do, and our students cannot risk us not performing to the best of our ability, especially when their education and their success is on the line.
Failing is a part of life, failing and growing work hand and hand. To be successful, you are going to have to take risks, that sometimes may not yield our expectations. This is a characteristic that we must instill in our students, that just because you failed does not mean you did not learn anything or grow, it is only when you stop trying that you have failed.
It is vital to catalyze, always make decisions and create opportunities based on the bigger picture, which is our students, or us; To catalyze you must develop a servant mentality, and understand that what you do is no longer about you. This can sometimes be a challenge when you feel like how you feel, or your ideas are being pushed aside. I am learning that serving is a way of life, and the individual reaps the reward of serving. The last verb is respect.
Respect for yourself, students, administration, and staff will take you places that a lack of respect cannot; it will allow others to see you in a different perspective, students will give you respect, and your administration and staff will give you access to resources and support that can help make your students successful. Respect in education can make or break your teaching experience. These verbs have helped me to reflect on how I use them and areas I can grow.