Every Saturday morning, my kids and I jump in the car and head to Thunder Bay for swimming lessons. It takes just over an hour to get there, so we usually listen to CBC radio to help us pass the time. On the morning of May 21st, as the kids were reading, I listened to Fresh Air’s Mary Ito talk about relationships with her guest, Amy Muise.
Wikipedia provides a short intro to the self expansion model: “The self-expansion model is based on two key principles. The first is that humans have a primary motivation to self expand. The second principle is that individuals often achieve self-expansion through close relationships which allow the inclusion of the other in the self.”
The concept of self expansion intrigued me, not only for its obvious connection to human relationships, but also for its possible relevance to teaching and learning. This is where you come in. If you are reading this post and you are an educator, I hope you will participate. You will be required to make a drawing for me, but don’t worry: you don’t have to be artistic.
I want you to draw a line. Just one line. Start at the left side of your page. This line will act as a timeline for your educational career: the direction & quality of your line will determine how you learned over a particular time. Your line will end depending on the length of your career or the size of your paper…
Don’t read any further until you finish drawing. Give yourself time to think.
What does your line look like? Does your line change direction at any point? When did you learn the most? Why did you learn more at these times compared to others?
I’d like you to share your drawing, along with a short explanation. I want to hear your story of learning, because we all benefit when we share our knowledge and experiences. I also want to hear how the theory of self expansion could relate to your career and your growth as a learner.
Please share the link to your drawing (copy & paste the url into the comment section under this post — your drawing can be shared wherever you enjoy sharing: Instagram, Twitter, etc.) along with your explanation or story. I’m looking forward to seeing your lines and hearing about their meanings!
My motive for this post: a new learning journey. I have been teaching since 1999, and have recently gained much interest in leadership. I work with a fantastic group of aspiring leaders, who are learning to set clear goals while considering the necessary criteria and reasoning behind their vision. I also enjoy my time learning alongside my fellow Tech Champions within our school board, who fearlessly explore the digital world and act as translators for their colleagues who are excited to speak a new language. Fortunately, I am sharing both of these experiences with my friends Lindsay and Stephen, who are part of my TLLP team as well!
…and next week, I’ll be interviewed for a Lead Learner position in our school. Competition for these roles is tight, which is both good and bad: good, because we have a strong staff with phenomenal leadership skills; bad, because I might not get the role I’m hoping for. I’m hoping to highlight a drawing or two (or more!) during the presentation portion of my interview, to celebrate our collective learning as well as the qualities we should consider when designing educational experiences for others.
Would you like to be part of a collaborative artwork for educators? 1) Head to NorthernArtTeacher.wordpress.com & read my latest post, "Draw a Line For Me". 2) Share your line drawing with me, along with an explanation of the drawing 3) *Think of how the model of self expansion relates to your drawing & explanation! All of the drawings will be combined into an artwork at the end of June. Please share with other educators!