“Unity is strength…when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved” – Mattie Stepanek
Flying in airplanes has never been one of my favorite activities. Especially alone. When I was young, I would always sit beside my mother and squeeze her hand with every bump of turbulence. For something meaningful, I always put on my big girl pants and fly, even if it is solo. This past weekend was one of those times. I flew to Chicago to see a friend from college and attend a concert series. This flight, however, had a distinctive difference.
Southwest Airlines no longer assigns individual seats. As individuals board a plane, they are welcomed to choose any seat they want to. This creates a Forest Gump situation in which while walking down the skinny aisle, carry on weighing me down, I had a “seat’s taken” feeling. No one wants to be squeezed beside a complete stranger.
This got me thinking about collaboration and professional development. Who is the “Jenny” in your school that welcomes you to sit by her? Who opens up their classrooms and lessons plans to work with you? Are you a Jenny, or are you scared to take the bold step and reach out to those around you?
People were made to be relational, and educators are helpful. If you have been self conscious or held out to take that big step, I encourage you to do it this year. Create a PLN using twitter, blogs, or Pinterest. Go next door to the teacher beside you and see if she wants to work together this year. It goes back to the age old saying “two heads are better than one”, and I believe we need more people like Jenny in the world.