Lemonade Learning

Episode 32 - COLLABORATION OVER COMPETITION WITH SHANNON MOORE AND STEPHANIE ROTHSTEIN

Episode Summary

We've got another twofer for you! Shannon Moore and Stephanie Rothstein are uber connected educators focused on collaboration, reflection, and empowering others to be their best. They share why hard doesn't have to equal bad and how passionate people can come together to pursue things passionately.

Episode Notes

Special Guests: Shannon Moore and Stephanie Rothstein

Shannon
Shannon is a HS ELA / Speech Teacher and Tech Coach from California who is passionate about relationships in education and aims to empower the voices of others. As a Google for Education Certified Trainer and Adobe Creative Educator, she's always seeking out new ways to integrate creativity across her school site because she believes creative thinking fuels innovation. She's a Global GEG Leader and #edtech geek who believes each educator's lessons can be elevated when the skills meet the tech. There's power in pushing the limits and she aims to prove that in the way she lives her life.

Twitter: @SMoore_teach 
 

Stephanie
"I am an 18 year educator, EDU Mentor, Speaker, Writer, Google Innovator, Trainer & Coach. I am an EdTech TOSA for Los Gatos Saratoga UHSD, Co-Chair a Design Thinking pathway and teach English. My work I’m most proud to share: TedX Talk ""My Year of Yes to Me"" published on Ted.com; writing multiple articles for Edutopia and more; being awarded CUE Outstanding Educator of the year for 2020; creating CanWeTalkEDU;  and co-founding Global GEG. I advocate for always modeling the risks we expect. I earned my Admin credential with the plan to always support others on their journeys."

Twitter: @Steph_EdTech
Website: stephedtech.com

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Episode Transcription

Brianna Hodges  0:00  

Welcome to Lemonade Learning, a refreshing look at learning today. We serve up high impact, practical strategies, alongside honest and energizing stories to help educators.

 

Lainie Rowell  0:12  

Make the most of your moments. Lead and learn with purpose and craft lifetime lemonade from the sweets and sours of education. Join us for a glass.

 

Brianna Hodges  0:24  

Hey, everybody, it's Bri.

 

Lainie Rowell  0:26  

And Lainie. Welcome. It's another twofer. We've got two amazing guests that I'm so excited. We've got Stephanie and Shannon. Stephanie, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

 

Stephanie Rothstein  0:37  

Sure. Hi, I am Stephanie Rothstein. I live in Northern California. I have a variety of titles. I'm an educational mentor and writer and speaker. My current position is I am a TOSA teacher on special assignment in Los Gatos, California for the Los Gatos, Saratoga Union High School District. And I am proud to be an innovator and lots of other creative things. And I'm happy to be here. Yay.

 

Lainie Rowell  1:01  

Shannon, tell us a little bit about yourself.

 

Shannon Moore  1:04  

Hey, everybody, so excited to be here. Shannon Moore, I live in Central California. I'm a high school English and speech teacher, which I really, really love. Also department chair tech, you know, site tech coach all those things. But at the heart of me is just somebody who's passionate about, you know, changing the world of education. And I'm so honored to be here because you guys are epic, and to share the space with Steph Rothstein is just an absolute pleasure. So thanks so much for having us.

 

Lainie Rowell  1:33  

Yay. And you know, we always talk about being unscripted. And we are because I think I blew it five seconds. Before we hit record. I was supposed to talk to Shannon. Okay, guys. Totally unedited. Here we are. This is us. Alright. So, Steph, tell us about your sweet and sour, sorry.

 

Stephanie Rothstein  1:48  

That's okay. That actually made me feel a lot better. So. So I'm all good. That was perfect. And as Shannon and I was talking, I was like, oh, there are things I forgot to say I chair a design thinking pathway. So there's lots but here we go with sweet and sour. So my sweet is getting to do stuff like this, honestly, more collaborative opportunities and innovative adventures, those pieces that have come out of this crazy time, those opportunities have been true joy, like I never thought that I would be able to launch, Can We Talk EDU, I never thought I would be writing things that would go into books, I never thought I would be doing all of these articles, and connecting with educators all around the world. So for me, that time, that space has been a real sweet, a real opportunity that has come out of things that have been really hard. I mean, hard doesn't mean bad. But it's been hard. So in terms of the sour, I would say it's along the lines of the hard. But it has been the consistency of the challenging things that has been really what I would consider the sour, like usually you get a breath in between things that are difficult. And that is the piece that I have found really challenging in supporting both students and staff at my school and my site is that there hasn't been that breath in between the each thing each time there's a change, there's another change coming. And then there's another one. And oh, by the way, in three more weeks, we're going to change the schedule again. And then we're going to do this other thing. And so that piece and being a person where I'm honored to support them in it, but it's a lot to support at this time. So I would just say the no relief from the consistency of hard things.

 

Lainie Rowell  3:26  

Oh, my I Bri Can you relate to that?

 

Brianna Hodges  3:30  

Yeah, there's a lot to unpack there. And I'm sure a lot of us can relate to that both professionally and personally. Right? Like there's not a relief in in a lot of those ways. At home or, or at school. And so I think that that Yeah, there's there's a lot of pieces in there that are definitely ringing true for several of us. So Shannon, how about you? What's your sweet and sour? What does that look like?

 

Shannon Moore  3:55  

Well, you know, I'll start I'll flip it and I'll start with the sour first and then we'll move to that sweet you know, the sour truthfully, this is the 20th year in a row where I've reached out to Celine Dion on her birthday to say hi and that you know, happy birthday and she hasn't responded back. So I'm just kidding. I mean, I'm not kidding at all. I'm obsessed with her. But no, but really, I would say my sour you know, our students just returned to the classroom right before spring break. And unfortunately, I can't join them. I have multiple sclerosis and so I can't be in the classroom until I'm vaccinated which isn't gonna happen for a while so it's all good. I'm healthy all as well friends but um, I I've had to zoom in with a sub in the classroom and that that was really challenging despite like the technological mishaps and the Wi Fi breaking and all that stuff. It was really that you know, not being in my own classroom with my students that that was really hard to see because that is my space where I thrive that's my space where I'm joyful and so soon enough in May, you know, there's always that hope my sweets you know, something that is really kind of helped me stay grounded and joyful is, you know, as you guys know, I'm one of three who has a podcast and you know, that's trucking right along. And it's bringing me a lot of joy. It's really great to collaborate with really strong women. And so if you are looking for some more fun, check out the 3 Caffeinated Coaches. But truly it is moment in my life, every, you know, day where I get to collaborate with strong women in that regard. And I think we're doing some good things and hopefully, you know, others feel the same way. And they feel like it's enriching to their own lives. And so I would say that's my sweet for sure. Yeah.

 

Lainie Rowell  5:43  

I love... I listened to your podcast all the time. And I just listened to your episode. Oh, I might get the number wrong. But was it six on reflections? Yep. Ah, oh, my gosh. And it really has me thinking about what Steph said about the no time to breathe and how we have to like, be super intentional, to make time for ourselves to do the important work like the reflection but it's, it's, it's hard to get to that.

 

Shannon Moore  6:08  

It is. It does require a deliberateness that I think sometimes gets pushed to the wayside. So, but it is so important to not only our self and our own personal growth, but also the growth of our students. So yeah, it's, it's a journey, and I'm learning along the way as well. So.

 

Brianna Hodges  6:26  

So I'm gonna jump in there, because there's a lot of stuff that's popping around in my head right now off of all of this, um, you know, kind of based off of both of the things that you guys shared in your, in your sweet and sour, which is that that consistency of change, right, like, something's always coming, right. And at the same time, how does that make us feel right? Like it, there's a lot of weight that comes along with that, because we're constantly feeling like, we're new to the game, right? We don't have it figured out. And what does this come into, and, and as educators, that's a really awkward feeling. Like, let's be honest, we're really good at being really good at what we do. And we like to be in control, we'd like to know, we're totally great with coaching our friends along our class, you know, our classes, our students, our colleagues were really great about helping them along the way. But that's only because we have it figured out right, like, that's really where our comfort zone is. And so I think that that's one of the things that's really, really, really tricky about this situation is that nobody's got it figured out, and everybody feels really awkward. And so in a lot of ways, we feel like the blind leading the blind, right? And we feel really vulnerable, because we're not sure if what we're doing is really going to get the outcome that we hope it's going to get. And so we've switched a lot of roles in a lot of ways. And and where I'm going with that is back to that power of reflection. Because I think for so long, like if I think back to my assignment to classroom to my time with districts, all these different things, reflection, we know how important it is, but it's so difficult for us to make time for it because we're constantly moving forward, right? We're like dun dunt duh, you know, and because we operate from the assumption that we're moving in the right direction, we kind of don't have time for that, right? We're like, No, no, no, we know we're good. We're can keep moving forward. Whereas when we're unsure, we start to really need that reflection, right in order to move forward. So how is that working in there? Because both of you are talking about, you know, reflecting whether it's through articles, whether it's through podcasts, all these different things like you're spending a lot of time contemplating all of these things that are going on right now. And how has that played into your time as educators? And how is that serving you in this moment?

 

Stephanie Rothstein  8:36  

Oh, my goodness, it's such a good question. I continue to think about messaging. So one of the big things that has been coming out of this is, I think that there is an after listening, I listened to the podcast as well, she and then but I am someone and I think she and I can attest to it were like, really, at my core reflection is a key piece of who I am. And it is a part of the practice that I leave in for my students, for staff for anybody that I work with. And we talked about ways to do it. We have entire rubrics that are on processes of reflection. But at the same time, we're now in a process for our school district anyway, we're when we're rolling out new changes, there's a time to reflect. But then there's a time to also message and communicate. And so I feel like those are two pieces that I keep grappling with, right that that there is this reflection, there's this talk, and then there's been there are times where we just have to do like as you were talking about Bri like we got to move forward. But what I keep hearing from parents, from students from staff is the consistency of messaging, which is really hard and a time of uncertainty. And so how do you share messaging in a way that doesn't raise up or amp up all of the feelings and the aingst around things that are already aingst filling, where you can give a consistent message on things that are inconsistent. I think that's where I, that's where I have all of these pieces that I'm truly grappling with. And so I've come to a space of realizing it's about how you package that message. And so I keep looking at how do I deliver it? How do I deliver it to show them that I have reflected on this? And how do I ensure that they understand the reflection and that I give them time to reflect as well? So it's like timing of the messaging, allowing them to actually have the space to take it in? And what do you share first, like, what's the order in which you share it? And how do you packages? And so I keep thinking about, like, something that Shannon said in her podcast was about how she reflects more personally, or like she'll, she'll do something where she won't share it out yet. And I keep thinking about how do we figure out a way to allow people that space if they need it, but then also bridge it to communication? And that's where I am in my process?

 

Shannon Moore  11:00  

Yeah, no. And like everything you're saying, you know, I'm just nodding along, because I think you're right, you know, I, I was actually a communication major in school. And so language matters so much. And honestly, at the at the heart of it, I think that when there is uncertainty, and there's automatically fear, because uncertainty and fear go hand in hand, for a lot of people doesn't have to be a bad thing. I think for some people, you know, we think, Oh, I'm afraid and that automatically, you know, has the capacity to stifle us. And that's true for many, but I think for a lot of people it comes down to what do you do in that space? Then how do you reform or re approach, challenging moments that are grounded and rooted in fear? And and like you said, reflect on him and sift through? Is this something that actually is life threatening? Or is this something that, you know, is, is I need to just rise up and overcome? And I think, I think language in that regard matters, I think we need across education, to shift the narrative shift the conversation to be, you know, you mentioned early on that change doesn't have to be bad, right? Or, or it doesn't have to be hard. Well, it's always gonna be challenging, right? But, but it's really truly about the approach. And if we can reframe the approach to, you know, challenging situations, I think that that is the first step in rising up and really creating that culture of risk taking, as far as packaging and you know, relaying the message. You know, I hear you, I hear what you're saying, because so many different stakeholders across education, have different needs have different interests. And it's hard to cater to every single one of them. But I think at the heart of it all, is it comes down to those connections, right? How do you build those connections in a way that are profound enough to where that fear gets pushed to the side, and the trust is the thing that that takes its place? And I don't know the answer to that, like, especially in regards to parents, right, because they have a desire and a need, and I am not a parent. But they have a desire and a need for their students or their children to thrive. And everybody thinks that they have the right answer. And I think it's just a matter of, you know, Steph, you are reflective human, one of the more reflective humans that I know. And I think that if we create a culture of that, really, you know, empower others to know that they can push against that fear against that uncertainty and use it as an opportunity for like a platform to, to move forward. That would be great, but I don't I don't know how we do that for every stakeholders the problem, and I think it has to start at the top, unfortunately. And a lot of the time, the people at the top are struggling to maintain and balance a lot of different, you know, balls in the air. And that's, that's challenging in and of itself. So

 

Lainie Rowell  14:10  

I think one thing, I agree with everything you said, I think one thing that I'm trying to be really mindful of is and I really a lot of what you both said in your sweet and sour resonates with me and Steph, again, when you said that no time to breathe. I feel like in anxiety mode, I just keep keep keep going. And I sometimes put that on other people. I'm sure Bri has felted if not every day on a very consistent basis. I just I have the anxiety and then I project that on to other people. And I'm trying very hard not to do that. And yesterday, I was coaching a group of teachers. And I'm really wanting to like make the most of the time and what can I give them what can I give them what can I give them? And for some reason, I just needed a minute and I'm like okay, I'm gonna ask you all a question and I'm gonna get quiet. I'm gonna get quiet for a while, it's going to feel awkward. And I'm going to let you let me know when we're done with this, like, I want you to think about it. And it was getting them to think about like their problem of practice. And they were completely absorbed in reflecting and thinking about their problem of practice. And I was like, Oh, my gosh, I almost did not give them the space for that, like, shame on me, I'm so busy trying to move through what I feel like I can do to help them, I'm not even giving them the space to think, what should they be thinking about before we even go into this bigger conversation. So I think this is a great time for us to think about how we can give each other space not even, you know, obviously give ourselves space, but also give each other space.

 

Shannon Moore  15:44  

I look across these four squares here. And we're all passionate human beings, right? Like, we lead with passion. And not everybody's like that. But I think unfortunately, one downside of that is because we're so passionate, we always are pushing and pushing and pushing. And it's taken a lot to realize, as an educator, that not all my students are like, you know, 100% all the time ramped up like I am. And so, you know, Lainie, you mentioning, giving a space to breathe. Like, I think I need personally to do more of that. And I never thought about the fact that maybe it's grounded in anxiety, my own anxiety, you know, and so I just, I appreciate that word, I think that's something that I'm definitely going to be reflecting on as we move forward.

 

Brianna Hodges  16:32  

So for me, I have a, I have a pretty extensive background in communication and marketing, and all of this. And so, hearing you all, you know, all three of you share this, like number one, my heart goes, so so so high hearing, that was the very first conversation, you know, that was what we were leading with, like the communication and the messaging around this, because there is no such thing as the right words, there's always the right time and the right audience for those. Like, we never know, like, there's not a right story. There's a right circumstance and a right time to share that. And, and so the the inside of that means that they're all important, right? So we have to decide, when do we want to share them? It's not what do we want to share? It's when and with whom? And and I think that that's one of those challenges, honestly, I mean, I have, I have all of the thoughts on this when it comes to, you know, when we're dealing with uncertainty, what communication properties are going to help us get through this, right, because you're spot on? Yes, fear automatically comes along with that, right? Like, we're fearful that we don't have the right answers. So then what are the answers that we need to be sharing right now? And how do we start to handle that amongst different stakeholders, and I appreciate that so much, because one of the elements that comes in with that is that we've got to have multiple vehicles of messaging, multiple vehicles of communication for our various stakeholders. And there are lots of sub groups of stakeholders within those stakeholders, right? Like none of our students are exactly the same. We're going to message to different students at different times with different stories, even though we're still communicating the same idea, but it's going to hit them differently. I'll never forget being in the classroom. And one of my, one of my friends came in and was was staying with me for the day, he was a guest speaker in all my classes, and he has three daughters. And he is like a super, super high, high energy individual. And needless to say, after the third period, he was exhausted of, you know, like how oh my gosh, I can't even imagine how you do this all day. But at the end of the day, he asked me if my family knew, like, if that was his exact word. He said, I've got to know does your family know? And I was like, does my family know what and he was like, the you have multiple personalities. And I was like, I don't have multiple personalities, like, what the heck are you talking about? And he was like, I've watched you, I watched you like, all day long, you'd say the same things. But you approach it very differently dependent upon who's coming in there. And I was like, Oh, that's just teaching. Like, that's what we do. Right? Like, we can quickly do that. But it's the same thing that happens with our messaging. And and I think that that's, so that part is important of knowing that like, while I appreciate Yes, we have to be consistent with that consistent doesn't mean you're giving the same message consistent means that your intention behind that is the same, right? Like we are bringing forward the proper intention so that everyone understands that consistency, but it's not a lather, rinse repeat to every single person where we just crossed out that, that stakeholders name. And then the other side of that is, you know, to your point Shannon around like the the being able to breathe and being able to give them time I think that so often we don't necessarily approach what it is that we're trying to achieve, like what's our outcome that we really need? And so like as teachers right now, is it that we really need them to prepare for this circumstance that's coming up? Or is it that we need for them to feel safe and secure so that they can better handle this and like, you know, whatever. The timing of it is right. And our outcomes are going to change continually depending upon what time of year it is and what we need and what kind of circumstance we need from our students. But at the same time, if we lean into what that outcome is, and that gives us focus to be able to be like, we don't have to do all the things right now, if we just need this outcome, and if we need this outcome, then we can breeze through these other things that are coming in, right? Like, it gives us that opportunity to deflect it. And I think that when we're dealing with such uncertainties, our humanity in us, tends to focus on Holy cow, everything is changing, when in actuality, not everything is changing, there are still some very certain strongholds and footholds that we can hold on to and keep our bearings. So while the world seemingly spins off of its axis, we can we can hold on to those pieces. And I think that that, like I'm hearing, I think that whenever you do your reflections, that's what you are coming back to like, right, like, that's where your your your foothold is in this. Okay, yeah, this is still the same, like we're still moving forward, this more able to catch our breath and go. So I just think it's fascinating at this point, like, where we're trying to figure out like, all of us on this on the screen are super passionate, like your thinking and around innovation and around creativity. And we're like, Well, yes, these are all these different ways that we can change. But at the same time, it's like, these are all the different ways that we're having to change. So how do we, you know, keep that momentum without scaring the bejesus out of everybody else, too.

 

Lainie Rowell  21:35  

Yeah. And I would add to that, like one of the things like we've been talking about reflection, but I'm also thinking about looking forward. And I don't know about you, but I have a lot of anxiety about what's coming next. And I know we should be really excited, and I'm looking forward to hugging my parents. I don't want to get weepy still haven't seen them. Um, but what is this going to look like? Is it going to go back exactly the way it was? Because I don't think any of us want that. And so I'm getting a little bit anxious. Bri knows this about me. I'm just getting a little anxious. What do you guys think? And sorry, I got really emotional. They're all now I made it weird. But we're gonna be fine.

 

Stephanie Rothstein  22:15  

And I didn't find it weird. It's honest. Like it, you know, somehow you still did that with a smile, I'm not able to really do that. But I, I do think that there's there's a lot coming. And that goes, I mean, so much of what you both just said just resonated with me. Bri when you were talking about your friend in the classroom, and coming in, and like this idea about changing, that you alter depending on who's in front of you. And that that is a natural process. And, and something about that, right? When you're talking about Lainie, like you missing certain people like all of those things, right? I think that I don't get to be the person that I am always, because I haven't seen some of the people that I normally would, I would don't have the same interactions that I that I am used to having when I think about this time of year, like some of the things that I absolutely, absolutely love, is actually getting to travel with colleagues and create, like a sacred space where we're like away from everything. And we're dreaming about where we're going. And so if I really am honest, like this time could be that, right? We're away from everything, even though we're in it. But we're not in the same physical space. And I'm so used to like some of my most beloved professional learning experiences have been going with the 10 people in my design thinking pathway and traveling out of state of being somewhere and learning in the day and then doing great things together at night and like growing together as people. And I fell in many ways that like this year, has halted that. And we were on this like trajectory of like, yes, we're moving forward. We do one of those things each semester, and I haven't planned and like, then we go and we see a different school and we connect with them. And then all of a sudden, I'm going okay, now we have to shift how we do this. There are some things that are really cool about that we've been able to see places that are farther away. And perhaps it's less impactful on a budget and we can take that money and use it for other things. And yes, but I do. I've been okay without people. And then as soon as I started to see people again, get on campus, I realized I was telling myself I was okay without people. And then I saw them and I went Oh, that's what it felt like. That's what school felt like. And I filled that time with lots of other stuff. And I filled that space with lots of other stuff over the last year and a half. But I being on campus. Honestly, yesterday was the first day that my students came to school because I don't have students every other day and my student teacher is taken over and I was in the office next door because now I'm pulled out and I'm doing things for the whole school in the district and I told my student teacher, if you want me to pop in, I was in this little office, that's actually like a little music studio podcast studio, does knock on the door, knock on the wall, like have a kid knock on the wall, because I was literally behind that wall. And I'm in a meeting with the associate superintendent, and then I hear a knock and I was like, Okay, hold on, I've gotta go, like, I know, we're talking about our next phase and all these things, but I need 10 minutes. So I just left the meeting with her and said, I'll be back. And I went in. And like, just seeing them all in that space. And being together, there was a power to that, you know, there was a power to walk in, walk in the space and hearing laughter in a different way that I haven't heard, I'm seeing Spanish classes dancing, like I posted just about that, that feeling and that I had forgotten what it felt like to be in a room with people, I did not remember that. Because when I see people right now I run away. So. So getting used to being with people was new. For me, it's just, it's a new space. And so when you talking about like, kind of dreaming of where this could go and what it could be, I want to somehow figure out how to still have that feeling. Even if I can't physically be with people. And I don't know that I think that I've honed in on it to some degree, but I don't know that it captures, like what I felt like when I walked into that space, and I and you know that that's what I that's what I hope is I can kind of get some of the best ofs apply it and then take some of the great things that have happened that bringing in all these amazing people that I could never fly in or like have joined, all that stuff has been wonderful. And somehow bridging that, and feeling like it's a new, awesome opportunity, and not a thing that I am like, feeling like there's a missing piece or a without or you know that there's a doubt about that.

 

Shannon Moore  26:55  

Yeah, and I think that what you say is, you know, going back to what you were saying Bree about how you know, so much is uncertain. So many things are changing. But at the heart of it, there are some things that are consistent. And I think connections and relationships and just the nature of humanity coming together is one of those consistencies. I hope that when things go back to whatever normal we you know, have in the future, I hope that if anything, educators take that away from it that like that lesson is learned. And that lesson is integrated. I think a lot of times individual teachers. And this isn't a knock, it's just a, it's just an observation. But I think that idea of like, sit and get, it just can't it can't function anymore. It can't function in a way that's preparing our students for these collaborative jobs that don't yet exist. Right. And so I think that, at the heart of it, I'd really love to see educators figure out ways to make collaboration more prominent in the core of their curriculum, really, truly giving a space to build together. You know, and I love that stuff does the design thinking pathway because you know, and we've talked about this before, the idea of like, collaboratively coming together and finding solutions, through that engagement through that, you know, diving in the research, the synthesis, all of it, that investigative piece is so special. And I think it's absent from a lot of classrooms. And one thing that I'm fearful of is that we're going to return to just what was and I think that so many educators have pushed themselves beyond their capacity this last year and a half, and have found a newfound confidence in certain ways. But it's hard. And I worry that again, we're going back to that idea that hard doesn't have to equal bad, but that's the connotation that's assigned to the word heart. And if we can shift that thinking, maybe, you know, some of these, these risks that educators have been taking over the last year and a half really will kind of continue and pay off and then innovative practices can grow out of that, you know, but at the heart of it all it is like let's collaboratively create. Let's be co creators of knowledge and everything that we do, rather than I'm the educator, I have all the answers because that isn't benefiting anybody. It's just providing opportunity to receive without digesting or sifting or investigating and that's, that's gonna prove continue to prove not as beneficial as giving students the spaces to like, really dive in. So

 

Stephanie Rothstein  29:39  

That made me so happy Shannon cause you know, that How might we like for my self that like drives me forward is how might we make education more collaborative and less competitive like that is that is what I that is my driver forward forever.

 

Lainie Rowell  29:54  

And I totally agree and I love you know, Steph, you very vividy... Like I'm gonna try not to cry again in this episode. But when you very vividly explained like the feeling I like the visceral reaction you're having walking through. That's the stuff we want to keep. I think what... and Shannon, when you're talking about that collaboration and how teachers have kind of stepped out of their comfort zone, like that's the stuff we want to keep, keep that risk taking, keep that focus on collaboration. And then I want to if y'all don't mind, I want to talk a little bit about how this has really affected me professionally in my growth. And in my connection, because I mean, y'all, I've been on Twitter since basically it was born. But I was like the worst Twitter user I was, I was, at best a lurker. And not to say that that's bad all the time. But you need to give to that community. And I really wasn't giving a lot for a good portion of my years on Twitter. And, and this is actually how I got to cut it out both of you is through the twitterverse. And so I was I had a friend over we're both vaccinated. Now I had a friend over last night, and we were talking about like, I don't know that my circle of friends and who I spend time with is going to be as wide as it was before. And I think I'm going to try and be very intentional, in who I keep close. And not because I want to be clicky or exclusive. But it's just like, I need to give room for family. And I need to give room for all these things. And I need to give room for now these professional relationships that I've established. And so I think that I'm just gonna try and be really thoughtful moving forward about that, because you're all amazing. Bri is like a sister to me. I annoy her, I'm sure endlessly. And unfortunately, we don't live anywhere near each other. So it's not like I even steal her clothes. I find plenty of other ways to bug her. But at any rate. So I just kind of wondered, because one thing I think that I'm going to try and include myself here. But I could definitely say about the three of you is the y'all lift each other up. You're all really good at empowering and kind of elevating other people. So I just wondered kind of what are you thinking about as far as what has maybe worked in the recent history? And what are we thinking about moving forward? And so I don't know, I'll Steph what are you thinking?

 

Stephanie Rothstein  32:12  

Um, I think, oh, my goodness, I, I love that we met virtually, I love that meeting over like a virtual space actually brought us to then a virtual conference to then more virtual spaces to writing. Like, I just think that there's, there's so much about that. And actually, one of the things that that made me think about was like our initial connection, one of the one of the things that I really valued was we took we were able to talk after I saw you speak virtually. And right away, you said, Do you want to write something together? Like that was your first thing that you said after maybe talking for 15 minutes, and I was like,

 

Lainie Rowell  32:51  

I'm just like, let's do this,

 

Stephanie Rothstein  32:53  

And I, I loved that, because it pushed me in a way I have I am someone that like, I'm all about collaboration, but I had never collaboratively written. Right. So. So that pushed me in a way that I hadn't been pushed or propelled before that I, I had done lots of other things in terms of projects and connection and being thought partners with people. But actually, in my own work, putting words to paper, I had never done that with another human so that you were my first one on that. And I just wanted to say thank you for that. And I think that it then propelled me to think about doing things in new ways and what that can bring to my own world that I hadn't thought about before. So thank you for that. And I do think that this can then spark more, right? Like, I feel like when you get a little bit of a win, right? When something works, then all of a sudden you're like, Ah, now I'm willing to try this. And I'm willing to try that. It just kind of propels you in a in a more positive collaborative direction when certain things go well, and when, when they don't excuse me when they don't. Now I have some people who are in my corner, right, that idea of lifting people up. That for me is super important. And I've been doing a lot of like reading and reflecting on how you do that in a way that is meaningful. How you reach out to people where it actually matters the way that you thank them, honor them showcase their work, right that for me, if I'm going to say I read something then I really read it, like, I really read it, I did something with it, I tried something and then I want to talk about it. Like I just don't, I don't want to be somebody that just says, Oh, hey, I skimmed it, like I really want to take my time with things. And that for me shows that's my own personal way of showing that like I'm honoring your work and your word and your values.

 

Lainie Rowell  34:47  

I love that.

 

Shannon Moore  34:47  

I mean, to be honest with you, my life in the last year and a half has changed tremendously thanks to the connections that I've made you know, I I am the type of person who if I see something in someone that I, you know, I envy like a quality or I want to be better in a certain area. And Steph can attest to this, I enter I like interject myself into their lives. There's no like, there's no escaping me.

 

Lainie Rowell  35:16  

Bri, I'm just like, I'm coming for you.

 

Shannon Moore  35:20  

Well, and and the truth is, this is like, you know, you that's how that's how it works. If we want to move forward if we want to if we want to change the world. And I know that that's so cliche sounding, but I truly believe it. If you want to change the world, and in our little many ways, like passionate people have to come together and pursue things passionately. And I, I see that in people, I'm an observer of the world, I tend to sit in the background for a while before I like, hey, world, here I am. And so when I see people that I lead, I'm like, ooh, they're gonna add to my life. I'm like, hey, let's be friends. And I'm all about it. And I've done it for the last year and a half with, with some with a lot of people. And I feel personally that I'm a better person because of it. I think that because I'm a Connected Educator, I'm a better educator, I'm a better friend, I'm a better wife, I'm a better person, just human in general, because, like you did, like you said, Steph, you know, you just, if you take the little kind of jump, you know, eventually and it works, then you kind of move forward. And I tell my students all the time, you know, little risks equal little, little confidences, and soon those little confidence is built a big confidences and look at all the sudden you're doing things you never thought you'd be able to do. And I lived by that, and I and I think I'm only able to live that way, because I have people that I surrounded myself with, to kind of push me, I don't settle very often for just like, what is okay, it's just not my vibe. And I need people to tell me when I'm off base, or I need to look to others and say, they're doing this not that I need to be them. Not that I'm comparing myself to them. But I could do more. I know my potential I've chosen to surround to surround myself by these people who are just incredible. I can be incredible, too, you know. And I hope that that doesn't come off arrogant, because I'm not trying to be arrogant in that regard. But like, we are all we're all made for greatness. And it's our greatness levels really do truly, you know, differ based on who we are, what we're about what we're focusing on. And I think the only way that we get there is if we have somebody or a group of small group of people coming alongside us and pushing us every single minute of every single day. And never letting us settle for what what is just subpar.

 

Lainie Rowell  37:42  

That's why I hitched my wagon to Bri.

 

Brianna Hodges  37:46  

She does have a way about her right like  Steph where like all of a sudden she's like, we're gonna do this and you're like, Okay, okay, yeah, we're gonna do this. And so I certainly I can, I can echo the life changing things that happened when Lainie gets involved and jumps in on it. So I am super grateful for her in many of those regards, some of the things that you all are saying are really, you know, they, to me, again, everybody gets tired of me saying this, but a lot of it comes back down to back to story and back to like the design thinking principles of all these elements that we're talking about, right? Because like, Steph hearing you, you know, yes, you walk into that classroom, we miss that, that collaboration, we miss that interaction so much. The thing that is beautiful to me about that is that sometimes those things get overshadowed because we haven't been intentional with them. Right? Like, I'm sure all of us have been in those circumstances, whether it's through professional learning, whether it's through classrooms, whether it's through faculty meetings, our time with our children at home, whatever that looks like, where we've just kind of gotten in a rut, right? Like, and we're doing this because we're supposed to be doing it and it just gets blah, and it just gets normal and it's not intentional at all. It's just rote. And it's not serving the purpose right like and so when it when it becomes that rote, just blah situation, the energy and the purpose is lost completely on it. And so then in those moments when you really really need it, people don't feel that because it's not, it's not... you tend to it's almost kind of like a little boy who cried wolf, you know, but but it's this like where you've just gotten used to it, right? Like group projects don't have the same weight when you're when you've missed used them over and over and over and over again, right, like group projects... And then when we say like the power of collaboration, people confuse that all the time because we don't have the true intentionality that like gets along with that. And so I think there's a lot... That's that's one of my hopes for moving forward in 2020/2021 is like, how intentional will we be with our time and with our space as educators? Right? Like, there's going to be time and space for very specific things, right? And so and I think like, if we really designed thinking it, right, like, we're gonna make that a verb, and we're gonna put that all in together. And we really put our focus before we jack around with risk taking and with prototypes, and we do all of that stuff, right? Where do we start? We start with empathizing the heck out of it and saying, What is what are we really after? What does this really really need? who really needs this? What are they missing all of those different components, because we can't get to any of those other pieces, until we really dig down for stakeholder involvement around that empathy. And I love it, because it's not what me as the teacher wants, it's not what me as the administrator wants, it's not me walking in and saying, guess what, we're going to go one to one, and this is what we're going to do, and you're going to move forward with it. Right? Like, it's me saying, this is what's missing, who's not getting this, who's, you know, all of those pieces that comes along with it. And so I think that, you know, having, I hope that we move forward with a very intentionally empathetic education system that will help us better meet the needs of all people instead of just certain circumstances as we come into that. And then I think it's also that, you know, alongside with that, whenever we have that intentionally empathetic situation, it allows for us to, to kind of move up what all of us are talking about as adult learners and saying that, and yes, I did just air quote, adult learners. And we're not going to jump onto that soapbox right now. But I think that it is, you know, it puts us into this, what we've said is that we need this collaboration over competition, right? And I can't tell you how many educators and how many leaders I've talked with, and not just the last year, but in the last 10-12 years around, how do we get learning to not be about grades, but instead to be about this? Well, you stop focusing on competition, right? You stop focusing on who has the right answer, you start focusing on? How can we come up with some collaborative opportunities for us to play off of each other and bring out our strengths, right? And so I think that, like, that's my part two of what I what I hope for, I hope that we can start to take these circumstances and really lean into each other's strengths. And at an educational, at a student at a learner level of how do we do this to gather, so that that we can really, you know, prepare for for our future and how that's going to all come in. So thank you all for being part of my, my opportunity to to be better in the future by you know, jumping in and making me making this shine up, because it doesn't happen without y'all. So that's for sure.

 

Stephanie Rothstein  43:07  

I love that. I mean that if we do if, if we and I love that everything, right? It's one of the reasons why design thinking has, like taken over my person is that everything is a we right. So if if if we approach everything as an opportunity for growth, then everything is an opportunity, right? So this idea that every single circumstance, every single thing that we're doing is an opportunity for me to grow, for you to grow for students to grow for parents, like for us all, and that's my journey is that I want them to approach I want us all to approach education as an opportunity for growth, wherever you are, is where you are, we're gonna grow from there. Like I for me, that doesn't seem like a crazy concept or a novel idea. And it is honestly how we how I hope that I have approached education. Thus far, I don't know that the system that I event that I'm in has always matched that ideal. But I believe I've carved that out in my own little space. And what I love to see is that that grows and grows and grows. And that it isn't just it isn't something that is thought of as unique or different or odd that it becomes a standard of practice that then we can work from. And I do see that we're moving more in that direction I do. I hope that that there can be more embracing of that and furthering of that, but I do just as opportunities for growth. I have it all over my wall all over. It's like me as a person, every single thing. Something that's that's when I say whenever something gets hard, right. And I know that somebody had said to me recently in a voxer chat, right, like repeating the line, I know I can do hard things was helpful for them. And I like that I started thinking about that recently. And then in addition to that, though, for me what I repeat often when I'm sitting in a meeting This is an opportunity for growth. And I will say it when people are talking about things that are challenging, like, Okay, well, I view this as an opportunity for growth. How are we planning? How are we hoping to grow from this? Like, where do we hope to go from here? I can't just like sit in this, like angsty space forever and ever and ever. I need to grow from it. So where do I hope to be? Where do I want to be?

 

Shannon Moore  45:20  

Yeah, yeah. And in that, I think that we need to give our self a little bit of grace in regards to letting go of some of the control. Because I think so often in education thus far, it's been like, you need to control the situation, you need to control your classroom, you need to control the curriculum, all these things. And once we start to give up that, that control just a little bit, that's when that growth and that true, you know, the true design thinking can take place, because empathy looks different for every single person based on experiences, backgrounds, etc. And I also wanted to add Steph, I agree with you completely. I also want to add to that, though, is like, you know, for me, I have to maintain the fact that like, little growth matters, you know, when I when I think have thought growth in the past, it needs to be this exponential huge thing. And that's daunting. And that just drags me down. And so for everybody listening, thinking, like, yeah, I'm all about the growth too, but it's hard, like, little steps, little growths are, you know, will build up and there'll become one day look at, you look around, and you'll be like, Wow, I've come a long way and celebrate that. Even the smallest little growth, like, we need to celebrate ourselves more as educators, because we're doing good things. We're trying new things we're loving on kids, you know, and colleagues. And that's really truly what what it comes down to what matters at the end of the day.

 

Lainie Rowell  46:43  

I mean, I feel like if we went through all this, as tragic as it was, as much as we would like to undo some of the bad things that happened, but if we can come away with this, I wrote down more empathy, less focus on control, more focus on growth, I think that would be I think those would be some huge wins. So I know we're about to run out of time. So Bri, anything we want to chat with them about? Besides we need their you know, how should people connect with you, we'll definitely want to capture that. But I want to give Bri a chance. Any last words, before we close out.

 

Brianna Hodges  47:14  

I just want to I want to toss a question for you all to for each of you to answer as you're as you're sharing your thoughts, which is we are you know, we're winding our way down through the end of 2020/2021 as a as a school year. So this is also that perfect time of year when we start to plan for next year. And so you know, keeping that in mind, I love the conversation that we've had around growth and in my mind as a as a country, girl, my mind as the non-California in the group here. I think it's wonderful, because the first thing that we think of when we think of growth is always a plant, right? But a seed doesn't become a flower doesn't become a melon, or whatever, you know, whatever it is, doesn't become that overnight, even though, you know, we really want it to, right? And so there's a lot that we have to put into that. So what are you hoping to bring into the fall what what's like an element of growth that that your via their experience that you're just gonna like Hold on tight to and be like, this is my little seedling that I'm going to take care of no matter what I'm going to keep watering it. And I'm going to bring this in and protect it for the fall because I really, really want to see this continue and blossom and foster. So we'd love to hear that from you two as you're also sharing the last little bits about, you know, how we can reach you and stalk you and and all those good things. So there you go.

 

Shannon Moore  48:40  

Awesome. All kickoff. So just to kind of start off on you can reach me most of the time on Twitter. I'm @smoore_teach, would love to connect my DMs are always open to you know, collaborate and, chat. You can check out the podcast I mentioned earlier by going to 3caffeinatedcoaches.com. That's the number three, and then caffeinated coaches calm. And to answer your question, Bri, for me, the last year or so has been a journey of creativity. I'm really trying to integrate creativity into my classroom. And it's a new thing for me, which sounds silly. But when I say creativity, I want my students and I happened to teach Advanced Placement English. So the learners that actually hate creativity, because there's no limits or structures. But I've really been trying to integrate that more into my curriculum. And I plan to continue that because I'm seeing you know, those little growths we talked about it I'm seeing those little like releases of control and little expressions of creativity for my students and it's welcomed on their end. And so I'm going to continue to push them to push their own limits in their own potential so that they can you know, thrive creatively because I think creative endeavors are the wave of the future.

 

Stephanie Rothstein  50:03  

love it love it, Shannon. And for me, you can connect with me most on Twitter. I'm at @Steph_edtech. And then you can find me on my my portfolio all my stuff is on my website at Stephedtech.com and that's where you can get links to all the trainings that I've been doing and, and all the other stuff and speaking and TEDx talks, and all that great stuff. So I would be more than happy to connect with people, I always say that I love to be thought partners with people. So find me connect with me. And I'm more than happy to hear what you're thinking about and just be a listener, and happy to be one, or be a thought partner on it and give you some feedback. And then in terms of next year, I have found I'm 18 years into education, and I am moving into more and more embracing educational leadership. And so that's where I am headed in my journey. And so the things I am loving, I'm actually like, I love, love, love doing coaching, mentoring like that, for me, walking in and observing and being in teachers rooms, is a true joy. Like, that's what I got to do yesterday, and I left elated. And so that's what I want to take into next year is continuing to feel like I do that I'm inspired by all the things that I see around me by other teachers and what they're doing. And then still supporting the pathway of the school, hopefully that connects English, history, and science. I love the idea of continuing to have things that are interdepartmental cross curricular, that really like embrace things for the fullness that projects and design thinking really can and just dreaming bigger. So those pieces and getting to see more people. And I hope that that then inspires me, to help others to want to write and share more of their ideas. So that I have people to collaborate with. And I'll say like, Oh, I just observed you in this, like, do you want to write about it together with me, and just helping to support more people on that journey of sharing out.

 

Lainie Rowell  52:08  

And Steph is a great writing partner. So I would highly encourage people to take her up on that. You both are really just so inspirational. And I'm just honored to have gotten to know you and to continue to get to know you and collaborate with you. And I just thank you both for your time.

 

Shannon Moore  52:27  

Yeah, thank you. It's honestly it's been a it's been a pleasure. And I love coming together with powerful women who are doing big things. So thanks for the opportunity.

 

Stephanie Rothstein  52:36  

I couldn't agree more.

 

Brianna Hodges  52:37  

Thanks, y'all. Thanks so much. All right. Well, we will check you guys on the next episode. So thanks so much for listening with us today and why you think lightning ready?

 

Lainie Rowell  52:48  

We're ready. I'm gonna go get some tissue. No, I recovered. I recovered. All right. Thanks! Have a good one.

 

Brianna Hodges  52:53  

If you enjoyed this batch of Lemonade Learning, please check out our website LemonadeLearning.us. For more resources, be sure to subscribe today, so you don't miss out on future lessons, laughter or lemonade.  

 

Lainie Rowell  53:05  

And if you're feeling really generous, please go to Apple podcasts to submit a review so other educators know the value. One last thing, learning and lemonade are best together so please connect with us on social media using #LemonadeLearning to share your story. Plus, we're always looking to giveaway stickers and swag.

 

Transcribed by https://otter.ai