The GWT Blog

Blog Category: Mentors / Role Models

Coaching at the Frontiers

April 20, 2011

By Christina Congleton
I’m left with the puzzle of how best to establish coaching as a profession characterized by good work—work that is excellent, ethical, and engaging. The good news is that if coaches are “cowboys” exploring the frontiers of a new profession, we certainly represent the warmest hearted of mavericks. The coaches I interviewed in the fall expressed deep dedication to their work and an impressive sense of responsibility to their clients, their own integrity, and the wider world. Indeed, such a sense of responsibility is integral to good coaching.

Howard Gardner Visits Bloomsburg

November 30, 2010

By Joan Miller
How are we preparing the next generation? Have we abandoned the role of the trusted role model? Have we failed as educators or is there hope for a better future among those committed to preparing the next generation of professionals to assume roles as responsible citizens? What does it take?

News from India

November 09, 2010

By Lynn Barendsen
Our colleague and inspired educator Kiran Sethi has sent us news about the Design for Change (DFC) initiative. The DFC Contest is an international contest encouraging children to make positive change happen in their communities.

The First Rule of Teaching: Do No Harm

October 25, 2010

By Holly Robinson, writer and former teacher
What makes a teacher brilliant? It's not easy for me to say, despite the fact that I've ushered three children and two stepchildren through school and into college. Along the way, I've attended countless parent-teacher conferences and PTO meetings. I've been a school volunteer. But it was only at that moment, with Jennifer and my son, that I really considered what makes a teacher brilliant and not just okay, or downright evil.

Educating for Failure, Seeking Success

September 24, 2010

By Yael Karakowsky, Preschool Teacher, Mexico City
Educating for Failure, Seeking Success seeks to involve parents actively in their children’s education. How? By providing children with real stories, life experiences through which parents become “humanized” and are much more than “perfect” images. Through this project, each parent is invited to write about a personal encounter with failure, pain or difficulty that can be used to teach and be an example of a learning experience.

My Summer Job

August 16, 2010

By Lucy Curran, Undergraduate at Harvard University and Summer Intern on the GoodWork Project.
I have come to understand that when I find work that truly engages me, I cannot wait to get out of bed in the morning. Instead of waking up with a sense of dread and hitting the snooze button, I am excited to start the day. This does not have to be true every day; but it ought to be the trend.

Early Warning Signs of Ethical Disaster

August 09, 2010

By Shelly London, The Family Dinner Project
It seems that every major disaster is followed by almost pro forma revelations of danger signs that should have alerted us to the danger but were ignored. We heard those revelations in the aftermath of 9/11 and we're hearing them now as the BP oil spill takes its place as the worst environmental disaster in American history.

In Search of Corporate Heroes...

July 29, 2010

By Howard Gardner
I don't think we lack any CEO heroes. But I suspect that the true heroes are largely unsung, and prefer to remain that way.

Google and Goldman

June 27, 2010

By Howard Gardner
At least until the spring of 2010, two lines of work have been particularly seductive for 'the best and the brightest'—the graduates of our leading colleges and universities. One professional option has entailed work at the cutting edge of the technology sector—for Facebook, Apple or Google. Complementing Silicon Valley, the other option has been to work on "The Street"—in investment banking, hedge funds, or some other branch of the financial industry.

Lay It on the Table

May 26, 2010

By Bill Bussey, Provost, Ombudsman, English Teacher at Noble and Greenough School
The end of the year for graduates is understandably pretty much all about them, but to be honest, sometimes we all can lose perspective down the final stretch.

On Being a True Activist

May 11, 2010

By Bill Bussey, Provost, Ombudsman, English Teacher at Noble and Greenough School
A while ago I put forth the proposition that there are no innocent bystanders, that those who sat idle while classmates were being humiliated or taken advantage of against their wishes were a major part of the problem. Our students will forever hesitate to stand up for what is morally right if they perceive a social cost, and they may never do it if the adults in their world do not stand up with them and for them in their formative years.

Inspirando al cambio: GoodWork para los niños de México

April 27, 2010

By Yael Karakowsky, Preschool Teacher, Mexico City
Mi nombre es Yael Karakowsky. Soy mexicana y he trabajado como maestra de preescolar durante los últimos tres años. Constantemente me pregunto ¿cuántos soñadores hay allá afuera?... personas que salen de la norma, que no descansan hasta dar ese paso extra, intentando no perder oportunidades y siempre buscando hacer un poco más. Me considero una de estas personas; una luchadora, una soñadora y en ocasiones… una persona que podría esperar más de lo que es realmente posible.

"Good work. It's what we're all about."

February 25, 2010

By Lynn Barendsen

Expeditionary Learning 2010 National Conference

Wendy and I are attending the Expeditionary Learning Schools National Conference in Kansas City. An amazing group of educators, and an inspiring series of discussions. This year's focus is on good work and we're honored to be a part of it. For those of you who aren't yet familiar with Expeditionary Learning, let me tell you a little bit about it, because it's growing, it's having impact, and that impact is of exceptional quality.

Surface Manifestations of Leadership

February 12, 2010

By Howard Gardner
With President's Day around the corner, it seems a good time to reflect on the nature of leadership. Below, we share Howard Gardner's responses to some questions recently posed by an Italian journalist.

Nobel Prize for Mentorship?

October 16, 2009

By Lynn Barendsen
The recent announcement of the Nobel Laureates in Medicine point to another achievement that deserves recognition: outstanding mentorship. Elizabeth Blackburn and Carol Greider were members of a scientific "lineage" with Joseph Gall at its head. Blackburn studied under Gall; Greider studied under Blackburn. Two very successful women in a field that has been dominated by men, in a field in which mentoring does not typically come first.

The Obama Gamble

October 14, 2009

By Howard Gardner
I begin with a confession. Away from my home in Cambridge, traveling in London, I must admit, with embarrassment, that when I first saw the headline in a tabloid "Obama wind Nobel Peace Prize" I thought it was a joke. After all, the satirical publication, the ONION has featured headlines that were less surprising. A bit later, I realized that the joke was on me.

The Road to Hell?

September 26, 2009

By Howard Gardner
If the proverbial inter-planetary visitor observed educational policymakers around the world, she would soon infer their single preoccupation: “How to raise scores on international comparisons like the TIMMS or the PISA tests.” This mentality also dominates the United States. A focus on standardized tests, how to raise scores, and what consequences follow ...

Looking for Good Work

September 25, 2009

By Amy Quon
A year ago, I was content in California—finishing up graduate school coursework and working in educational program assessment. Based on what I hear from everyone who’s ever spent a winter in New England, I probably should have appreciated the sunshine and cool breezes back home (read: the opposite of gray skies and icy wind) a bit more.
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