Sharing?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by YoungTeacherGuy, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    I had lunch with two good friends today. They both happen to be teachers. Anyway, one friend has been teaching for about 15 years; however, she recently moved to a new school and grade-level. She taught Kindergarten for years and years and decided to make the leap to 3rd grade.

    She said she loves the curriculum but that her teammates aren't willing to share anything at all! She said that they're not rude or mean, they just don't like sharing ideas or materials unless she directly asks them for something.

    It got me thinking: Am I the same way? Do I ever offer things to other teachers? Have I been helpful to my colleagues?

    What're your thoughts? Why is it that some teachers don't like to give up their strategies & materials?
     
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  3. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    I'm not sure why teachers like to keep things to themselves. I usually don't have this problem in my school, but I do need to ask for what I need. If I don't ask for materials or ideas, how would the other teachers know to share?
     
  4. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    My district (which is the same district my friends teach in) has a minimum day schedule each Wednesday for teacher collaboration. During that time, teachers are supposed to have "Collective Creativity."
     
  5. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    "Collective Creativity"...is this where teachers share what they are doing or teachers work together to plan units/lessons?
     
  6. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Anytime anyone in my department comes across anything interesting, we put a copy in the mailboxes of anyone they think could use it.

    It's autopilot.
     
  7. Marci07

    Marci07 Devotee

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    I have no problem sharing strategies, resources, or ideas. I often share them with new teachers but I don't want to overwhelm them. I kept sharing a lot of resources and ideas with a new math teacher but she was still very overwhelmed so I then offer to help her plan her lessons. Hopefully we can get to a point of planning our lessons together and collaborate even more. I think more collaboration is very important.
     
  8. smurfette

    smurfette Habitué

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    When I had a classroom, I would automatically e-mail anything I made to my teammates with an invitation to "use/not use as you see fit." I made copies of my flash drive for a teacher who took my place last year when she asked, and gave my original flash drive to a former teammate who went to another school when she asked (I have back-ups on my home computer). I don't care if they use my material as is, don't use my material at all, or change my material to suit their needs. If what I have made can help a student, any student, then I don't care whose student it is. Luckily, I've worked with teammates who feel the same way!

    It is possible that the other teachers don't think what they have is good enough to share, or they don't realize that their teammate needs the support. However, I have heard teachers (mainly on here, and not a lot) say that they don't like to share with their teammates. Some feel that their teammates take and don't give in return.

    I actually love it when I see other teachers like my ideas/materials and use them. It makes me want to create more.
     
  9. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    I don't really understand it either unless people want the credit for themselves. If a P walks in and says wow, what a great lesson idea! and it was really someone else who deserved the credit for coming up with it? I'm not saying it's right, just that maybe that's one motive.

    My team probably gets sick of my e-mails sharing things that I've made or lesson ideas that I think they may find useful. But I think that's part of being a "team". Why should someone else spend an hour making a powerpoint that I've already made. If it can help the students...
     
  10. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    We do share, but I also believe there is nothing wrong with expecting to be credited for your work. I believe that writing lesson plans and crafting activities are in the same vein as composing music and authoring books.
     
  11. KatherineParr

    KatherineParr Comrade

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    I share if asked, but I don't offer my materials unless asked. This is because:

    1. I am the only person who teaches my subject.
    2. My observation is that what works for me often fails to work for other people. Lots of the things my colleagues do would not work for me, either.

    So I'm as collaborative as seems warranted by the situation, but not an automatic sharer.
     
  12. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    We share anything we come across that we use, even if the other teachers don't use it this year, it gets filed away in the appropriate file for consideration next time we teach about whatever it is.
     
  13. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    AGREED!!! :thumb:

    I work sooooooo incredibly hard on my PowerPoint presentations. Therefore, I typically don't email them to my colleagues. Plus, I'm afraid that they'll critique them instead of using them. I guess I haven't built that level of trust with my teammates because this is my first year working with them.

    I hope my comment doesn't sound bad; I'm just being brutally honest.
     
  14. DrivingPigeon

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    I think people don't share for a few reasons:
    - They don't want other to get credit for their ideas.
    - They did all of the work, and don't want anyone else to use it.
    - They don't want to come across as bragging/show-y.

    My team shares almost too much! I spent 2 hours today cleaning out my inbox, which was filled with resources, webpages, etc. from my team. I also had a stack about a foot high of materials that they have shared with me.

    It is tough, though, trying to decide what is worth sharing. I could have a resource or lesson that my team would absolutely love, but I can't share everything with them. But we definitely share a lot!
     
  15. terptoteacher

    terptoteacher Connoisseur

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    In the past I have shared until it became expected. I felt that I was taken for granted. When it was said at a team meeting,
    "I hope you've planned something great for me cuz imjust so tired." I decided to keep things to myself more. Yeah, I felt a little stingy, but it made my teammates step ip a bit.
     
  16. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    This can be a tricky situation. As the special ed teacher, I'm often a resource for others so yes I share tons of materials. I usually do so only when asked though. I think people know they can come to me at any time. Our new title 1 teacher is constantly filling my inbox (as well as the other title teachers) with various "resources"- I'm talking 10+ times a day. I honestly find it a little annoying/showy. This may be more based on her specific personality, but she tends to come off as thinking she's better/knows so much more than everyone else (she came from an extremely affluent district that had tons and tons of resources), so when she sends us all these things based on her personality in general it tends to rub me the wrong way. If I need something from her I don't have a problem asking. If I see a really good idea in someone else's classroom, I generally ask them if I can use it in mine if it's something I'd be interested in using.
     
  17. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Okay - I will also be honest. I keep tons of resources which I am more than happy to share with other teachers.....but every now and then I start to feel resentful or taken advantage of and the sharing stops. Then I feel guilty that my feelings for the teacher are keeping the kids from getting some good "stuff" so I usually get over it.

    I really appreciate teachers who share their ideas and resources on their websites!!!!! I am constantly "borrowing" their wonderful ideas.
     
  18. each1teach1

    each1teach1 Cohort

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    I have a digital dropbox with two teachers that I PLC with (one from each level) and I drop ideas into their folders when I create or find something that I think would be fun or interesting to do with our kids. However, I do have a separate folder just for myself and not everything I create get shared.

    For example, I have my kids working on an extensive portfolio project and before I started the project I told the other teachers on my level about it. They said it sounded neat, but they didn't really want to have to deal with it so perhaps I could "dry run" it and if it went well we could incorporate it across the level next year. Well, it was a hit and their students are now asking if they'll get to do this project this year. The other teachers are now asking about it and know I have a physical file cabinet that I've been filling with activities. The questions they ask make me feel like next year they just expect me to hand over everything so they can use it too.

    I understand wanting to use something that has shown success but it's all a little irritating because I invited them to do it with me, but was literally told they didn't want to risk upsetting the parents with such a long term project that wasn't introduced up front at the beginning of the year. So I was left to take the risk alone, spent countless hours creating and setting up activities to make sure it aligned with curriculum, taking snipes from some teachers whenever it showed any signs of going bad and now I'm almost expected to share the benefits because we're in a PLC (professional learning community). I'm not sure how I feel about that.
     
  19. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I share a lot. Because of my Special Ed responsibilities, I have resources at a wide variety of levels and they are easy for me to access. I'll often pop something into someone's mailbox--"Thought this might be helpful for Johnny". They can use, or not, as they see fit.

    In my other role, as English teacher, I tend to pop a copy of all assignments and rubrics that I create into the mailboxes of the other teachers who teach the same grade level/subject. Some are used, others aren't. We have very different styles, so everything isn't a ""fit".

    If others (teachers and students) can benefit from what I've done, I'm good with it. I love seeing students in other classes having fun with an activity that I've created.
     
  20. Marci07

    Marci07 Devotee

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    Even if other teachers use your project and reap the benefits of your hard work, you will get the credit for creating it and that is something that will stand out in your evaluation and/or resume. In fact, I think that creating something that other teachers implement is not only benefitial for students but for the teacher who created it because you get recognition.
     
  21. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    We have to share ideas at my school. If I'm doing it, they are suppose to be doing it and vice versa. So not sharing ideas anymore isn't really apart of the equation. Now there are some opportunities to do things of your own, but not like it used to be.
    When we were able to do our own thing, I would share on occasion were certain teachers, but not everything I did. If I did share something, I would not expect the teacher to give me credit it for it though, that I don't want. Sharing too many things could eventually make classrooms to similar (too late that has been forced on us now), and I prefer to keep my classroom different.
     
  22. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    In my old job, at a private school, there was no scheduled time for sharing or collaboration. With only one teacher per grade, we were each out there 'on our own'. It bothered me tremendously and I was desperate for collaboration. I constantly introduced ideas at teacher meetings and was met with little response. It was the worst part of the job.
     
  23. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    At my previous school, we had time set aside once a week where we met with grade level teachers to plan the lessons for the next week. It was good for newer teachers because that is one thing they didn't have to necessarily worry about. We weren't tied down to those specific lessons as long as those topics got covered.

    Now I'm in a smaller school where I am the only SPED teacher so I don't get the collaboration that I used to. We do share resources when we come across something that we think will work. Most of the time there is only one teacher that teaches a subject so there is no one to share resources with.
     
  24. kteachone

    kteachone Companion

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    I find at my school, the older teachers hate to share/hate to plan together. It's frustrating because they have taught Pre-K for decades and have a wealth of knowledge!
     
  25. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

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    We also have only one teacher per grade level/subject, but we are sharing as much as possible. We have a "teacher drive" on our network that every teacher has access too, so a lot of things get put on there. When I moved from 5th grade, I put my whole folder of documents on there so the new teachers could access it and use/adapt/refer to anything they wanted.

    I wish I had someone to share planning with--and my mother would probably like it too (then I could stop bothering her to 'talk through' things when I'm stuck!).
     
  26. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Man, I hadn't even thought of that. I definitely wouldn't want that to be the case. We have 2 brand-new teachers on our team; I remember what starting from scratch was like. So that's always what's in the back of my mind-I think they'll use what they use-I didn't think about the dread of seeing another e-mail from me.

    One of our strands to our evaluations this year is lesson planning and I often wondered since we have different assessors if someone was getting a higher evaluation for something they really didn't come up with. It's in their plans, but the idea came from someone else.
     
  27. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    This is an interesting question, and one I haven't even considered before. I guess I don't typically share (unless it's a great article or something that I ran into), but not for any malicious reasons. I might mention something I am doing, especially if it is very exciting to me, and my colleague is always welcomed to use the idea (sometimes she will come out and ask), but I don't typically volunteer. I don't really know why, but it certainly isn't for any specific reason.
     
  28. Bumble

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    I have been blessed to have a grade partner who is awesome! We constantly share ideas and finish each other's sentences. Also, we're always teaching the same thing at the same time. I will never understand the teachers who don't share.
     
  29. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    My dad's school is known for working teachers to death for three years (up until the point they'd qualify for tenure), rating them "satisfactory" that entire time, and then suddenly right at the end of that 3rd year deciding they're unsatisfactory. Fortunately, he got tenure a long time ago. One of his teammates who was up for tenure basically ended up in that situation, and she had given her ss lesson plans to a brand new teacher (they collaborate to the point of teaching the same things at his school). On the lesson plan part of the evaluation, the veteran teacher up for tenure got an "unsatisfactory" while the new teacher got a "satisfactory" for the exact same plan!
     
  30. DaleJr88AmpFan

    DaleJr88AmpFan Cohort

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    Sharing.. that is a slippery slope sometimes. There are times that I am absolutely willing to share with others and times that I am unwilling to. On my team, we have a leech. This individual constantly wants help from everyone from office staff to specialists. However, she is unwilling to give of herself. When approached, she can be rude and unflexible. She is unwilling to share or help anyone else. For example... Last year, she suggested that we bring new things to share at our PLCs. Well, we started off the year trying to share. Low and behold, she brought only ONE thing to the table for 8 weeks. Yet, she continually asked for help and wants us to "save her" when she disorganized and/or is ill-prepared. I have come to the point (as well as the rest of the team) that I refuse to enable her any longer. Truly, that's how I feel.

    With other team members, I share willingly and openly.

    So... sometimes "sharing" is awesome. And, at other times, it can be frustrating as all get out.
     
  31. MATgrad

    MATgrad Groupie

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    I wish I had to someone to share with! I'm the lone teacher for my area at my school but a lot of the stuff I have could be easily used by multiple areas. If only..
     
  32. 2ndTimeAround

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    ditto, ditto, ditto.
     
  33. isabunny

    isabunny Comrade

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    It's all about the students! I have shared everything/anything that I found useful or have been asked to share. I have also used other teachers ideas many times myself (via educational websites and other teachers). I haven't come across a teacher who hasn't been open to sharing ideas and collaborating as a team. Unless you are writing a book and publishing your ideas, why not let as many students and teachers benefit as possible. Whatever can make a teacher's job easier and more effective should be passed on!
     
  34. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    While I am not publishing my ideas in a book, I do consider my resources to be "published" when I print them. I feel that as a professional, the curriculum that I create should be respected accordingly.

    Other members have shared responses to your last statement. Some teachers seek to "beg, steal, or borrow" to the point they are not putting any consideration into their lessons. Besides the imbalance in that, if you are just sponging off others and not involved in planning, I feel the teaching could suffer because of a disconnect.

    Again, I do share, but I share with the expectations of professionalism.
     
  35. texaspenguin

    texaspenguin Rookie

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    Teachers teach in different ways with no magical method that works for everyone. I collaborate more with one teacher than I do with others because we have a similar style. Some things we both do, some we don't, but we share basic plans.
     
  36. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Unfortunately, I think there is another reason for not sharing. I have a teacher on my team that doesn't share because I honestly think she doesn't want anyone to be "as good as she" believes she is. I can't think of any other reason for her attitude.

    I have never had this problem before. We've always shared. This is a new grade level and a new person to work with. We're supposed to be planning math together since we all teach it. I'm tired of sharing my resources and ideas and getting nothing back but a "thank you" or "I just follow the plans from the state. They're the best ones to do, you know."

    That's BS! They aren't the best, there's room for more ideas, and I've seen you do other things. She really thinks she's the best thing around. So why wouldn't she share her ideas? Like I said, I think she wants to be the only shining star around.
     
  37. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Haha! Did she work at my school a few years ago? Sounds oh-so-familiar! :lol:
     
  38. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    I worked with a teacher that refused to share resources with visiting interns. Her stuff was golden. And every bit of it was authored by someone else @@ So she could use the work of others but she wasn't about tell where she got it.
     

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