How to deal with teachers taking my ideas...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by newkgteacher, Aug 23, 2015.

  1. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Aug 24, 2015

    She's a new teacher, and she wants to prove herself. Perhaps you don't remember what it is like to be a new teacher... I'm sure it is just about how nice it would be to get acknowledged for whatever it is you're doing. After all, you don't put money in the tip jar if the person isn't watching (e.g. George Costanza).

    I hear you, newkgteacher. I'm all-for sharing ideas, and 99% of the teachers I know are too. But there is something to be said for a simple acknowledgement, which I'm guessing was missing. Don't worry about it.
     
  2. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Aug 24, 2015

    No offense meant, but if she is going to refer to herself as the veteran of the group, she doesn't get to play the new teacher card.

    I work with a teacher who is teaching science, but really isn't qualified based on the course work. However, the state is calling this teacher qualified under an old system, so this teacher works with me. If I want the students to have consistency across the board, I need to help the other science teacher get up to speed, and the one thing that accomplishes that is for me to share my plans, hook, line, and sinker, without possessive feelings that something is being taken from me, or stolen.

    I find it petty that OP wouldn't mind sharing the exact same ideas with teachers from a different school, but begrudges the new teachers for using what she showed them. OP needs to grow up and accept the responsibility of nurturing new, younger, or less experienced teachers. We all have different talents, and I am a wiz at finding resources, and I don't care who uses them - I would rather see them in practice instead of just a project I may get to "someday."

    We don't live or teach in a vacuum, thankfully, because she stole or borrowed "her" great ideas from someone else.

    I am going to give the benefit of the doubt to OP and think that whatever dismay she originally had about her new teammates where using her ideas has changed to pride, pride that she is able to be the "veteran teacher" of the group. Trust me, someone will notice. Playing and working well with others is a very attractive quality, and I do this pretty well in my life, so I am certain it is possible. When we share knowledge, we grow a little ourselves. I, for one, would hate working in isolation, without being able to bounce ideas off of my colleagues.
     
  3. The Fonz

    The Fonz Math teacher (for now...)

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    Aug 24, 2015

    Best post in this thread.

    Bolded the most important factor.
     
  4. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    Aug 24, 2015

    Totally agree with vickilyn! In fact, I immediately thought of a video I saw on YouTube where a teacher used a slightly different behavior system but it also involved various levels using karate belts/ colors. And obviously both of you took that from karate itself, so.... Lighten up. It's fine to feel momentarily upset about not being acknowledged but really everything in teaching is and should be fair game for the good of students.
     
  5. applecore

    applecore Devotee

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    Aug 24, 2015

    I understand the original poster's issue.

    But I have to say....Definitely a great complement if they are loving your ideas and using them! You'll find a different way to tweak what you're using as you go too.

    Teaching is all about collaboration. I spent 2 weeks with other teachers this summer from different cities sharing/stealing/borrowing ideas. We collaborated over as much as we could to bring things back into our classrooms to try. We had teachers with 2 to 40+ years of teaching experience.

    I can't tell you how many ideas I came back with, but I know my teaching tool box is definitely fuller than it has been in the past 7 years that I've been teaching.

    Cheers to all those teachers willing to continue to pass on their knowledge and ideas to others. :)

    If we're teachers and not learning, why are we teachers?
     
  6. miss-m

    miss-m Groupie

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    Aug 24, 2015

    Everyone has pretty much said over and over that them using your ideas is not a big deal (and I agree with the person who said that your students seeing other students and friends with their belts can be exciting rather than disappointing for them -- what a great way to teach kids to celebrate their friends' successes! That's a good skill to teach.) though I definitely understand the frustration of not getting credit. My CT when I interned with one class took a math game I had bought on TPT (I gave her a copy willingly; that's not what bothered me) and then proceeded to tell her coworkers, "Look at this great math game I found!" -_-' No credit to me at all, nevermind the fact I paid a few dollars for it.

    BUT. Not the point I wanted to make.

    I would say that I definitely agree that these other teachers are likely using your ideas as a starting point. But the kids in their classes are not the same as the kids in your class, and what works for you may end up being a disaster for them. And that's ok, because it's a learning experience for everyone. My CT when I student taught (different teacher) sometimes got frustrated with me when I used lessons straight out of the curriculum instead of modifying or making my own -- but as I told her, I didn't have anywhere else to start. These teachers are new; even a year of experience makes a huge difference in how you make lessons, and if they don't even have that, it's really hard to make up your own lessons or even know how to modify someone else's plans. That takes time and practice, and they'll learn, but they still need your great ideas as a starting point because, like me, they likely don't know where else to start.

    Yes, it's frustrating to have ideas taken from you -- but consider it a compliment (as many others have said), and ask if you can brainstorm modifications with them if it bothers you that much. They might not know what changes to make for their classes, and having a more experience teacher sit down with them and say, "This is what works for my room -- how can we adjust it to make it work for yours too?" might be the nudge they need.
     
  7. newkgteacher

    newkgteacher Rookie

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    Aug 25, 2015

    OK, I need to clear up a few things:

    1. I'm a guy.

    2. I referred to myself as the veteran "of the group" because I technically am the veteran: the other teachers are first year teachers. However, I posted on this forum because I was agitated by the other teachers (the Class Dojo thing is not the only incident of being copied) and I wanted to hear from more experienced teachers if this practice was acceptable or not. I don't care about praise or getting credit; I simply dislike it when people take my ideas and don't ask me if it's OK to do so. I thought this would be a courtesy thing, but I (again) sought the advice of this board simply because I don't know how to handle this type of thing, and to determine if I was right or wrong to feel this way.

    3. I take exception to the numerous pot shots that people have taken at me. At the very beginning of the thread, I acknowledged that I won't do or say anything to the teachers because the first few responses gave me what I needed: they told me that I should not take offense and to instead share the wealth. However, I logged on to check on the thread and I see people telling me to stop whining and to stop being petty. These types of comments are uncalled for; I'm still struggling to find out where I wronged anyone. I asked for advice for a reaction that I had, I received good advice on the first page and accepted it, which I clearly stated.

    I want to be a team player. The past two years, I worked with people that didn't want to help me and I know how it feels. But, I am a human and felt wronged by simply not being asked for permission. I now see that it's an acceptable practice in the teaching community and I will learn to grin and bear it. However, I hope that the people who felt it necessary to rip into me take a moment to jump down from your high horses and show the same courtesy and professionalism that you are imploring me to display.
     
  8. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Aug 25, 2015

    I had a similar experience. I think for a year or so I believed I was supposed to be on the exact same page as the rest of my team or school. Then I decided I didn't like the stuff I was imitating and upon realizing that stuff wasn't required at least in the exact same way, I started branching out.

    Liberation is a nice feeling. It's still nice to have ideas when you have none, but I like not being to be a carbon copy of the teacher next door.
     
  9. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Aug 25, 2015

    To the OP, I get it's frustrating whenever you're being copied verbatim. Using Class Dojo like you did is one thing. Taking the exact cutesy martial arts belt thing is really quite another. I like the suggestion of putting your name on your truly original stuff. Eventually most teachers will do their own thing.

    I guess I'm not sure what the best thing to do at this point would be, I'm afraid. It's hard to stick your name on a system. It looks bad to pester the offending copycat.

    I say keep doing your thing and make your classroom memorable. You'll know what works for your class.

    School culture may be a part of it. My school... we share all the time. We even have the term "shopping". This actually means going out to the copy machine and seeing if anyone left behind anything good. In face, our secretaries, when sick of the piles of forgotten stuff at the copier, announce "shopping time or it's going in the recycling bin".
     

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