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 Ishmael-As an administrator 
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I was wondering how anyone is relating this book to being or becoming a future administrator... How does the feelings expressed in the book relate to you and your professional goals? Insights please...

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Kami McKay


Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:14 pm
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I feel that an administrator could learn a lot from this book that could be related to his/her field of work. One such lesson would be in "labels". Whether you are a "human" or an "animal", a "giver" or a "taker",Goliath or Ishmael, there are expectations already placed upon you. These expectation could cause one to be caged with the belief that they can not learn (animal) while others, thinking that they are superior have expections for what will be provided for them. There are also lessons to be learned about being narrow-minded. Its not ALL about me, it's not ALL about an E.O.G., its not ALL about the curriculum...it's about individuals. When we become too narrow in our focus, we fail to see the big picture. Educators could percievably change the world, by changing it's focus. How to better take care of our resources, our animals...each other instead of focusing on competition and egocentrics. It all started with a Vision...Who wants to change the world? Sound too great? ...then lets change it...maybe we could say...We want no child left behind! (sarcasm)

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Rosanna Whisnant


Tue Mar 06, 2007 1:56 pm
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Kami, I too am having a hard time finding a correlation with being an administrator. This is definitely a philosophical book - there's no denying that. But in education - ???

I see the link to being a teacher - give stories or other avenues to lead to discovery rather than pure lecture, here it is, sit there while I give you the information.

As from an administrator's perspective - it re-iterates that we will be in contact with students and parents from a wide variety of beliefs and backgrounds.

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Lisa Fortenberry


Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:45 pm
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There is no doubt that this book has little to say that supports the "Taker" view of the world. There is definite sympathy for the "Leaver" view of things. In that I think lies its value, not only to being an administrator, but as to being a human. There is a passage in the book where Quinn writes, "Back at the beginning when I said (the narrator speaks, not the gorilla) that there was no such thing as certain knowledge about how people ought to live, what I meant was this: Certain knowledge is knowledge of the one right way. That's what Takers want." Perhaps here is some wisdom important to us as administrators. Often we want to know the "right way" of doing something when there is no right way. There are multitudes of right ways and wrong ways of doing something. Perhaps it takes the "open-mindedness" of being a Leaver to find our way. There is no room for rigidity of mind set when leading a school.

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"I have never let my schooling interfere with my education." M. Twain


Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:35 pm
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I think the point of this book is first to look at a situation from a different perspective. Second, it is important that we focus on the big picture before we can zoom in to certain areas. (Everything is inter-related to a certain degree). These philosophies are new for some and though it is easier to discredit these ideas, we really need to think about them and see if they may fit in to what we believe...how could one know if one does not truly absorb the idea? These thoughts and relationships help make us who we are and plays a large part in our administrative roles.

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Leigh Anne Frye


Wed Mar 07, 2007 1:41 pm
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When I truly felt that I could answer Kami's question was not unitl I got to page 259 "In my experience, you never really know how you're going to handle a problem until you actually have it." We can read case study after case study and give our fictional account of "I would have handled it ..." but we will never know until we are in the moment with actually people.

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Tim Hoffman


Wed Mar 07, 2007 1:59 pm
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Tim, I feel the same way. No two problems are ever going to be exactly the same; there will aways be something separating them--making them slightly different, and we can't truly predict how we will approach them. And I think it is important to realize that. We might not even solve the same problem in the same way on different days; something might have happened to us to make our thinking change.

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Rebecca Secrest


Wed Mar 07, 2007 3:17 pm
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Kami,
As an administrator I now see more to this story than I did on first reading because of our class tonight. When we look at children, it is very important that we try to see all the stories that make up that child's reality so that we can make a difference in shaping his/her tomorrow. Also, as leaders we should be taking steps to help change man's focus on self so that we don't destroy our world.

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Jackie Shaw


Wed Mar 07, 2007 9:55 pm
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As an administer, I find it useful b/c it suggests openmindedness. I think the book is all about listening to other viewpoints. We as educators/administrators have to be open to hear other veiw points even though they are coming from our "wild" children at school. We find out they have something to teach us.


Thu Mar 08, 2007 5:17 pm
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[quote="Rosanna Whisnant"]I feel that an administrator could learn a lot from this book that could be related to his/her field of work. One such lesson would be in "labels". Whether you are a "human" or an "animal", a "giver" or a "taker",Goliath or Ishmael, quote]

I see your point Rosanna, I know everyone can learn a lesson about giving labels.. this class has really hit on that issue with the class and cultural capital debates.. thanks for the insight for this book.

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Kami McKay


Fri Mar 09, 2007 5:49 pm
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Jackie Shaw wrote:
Kami,
As an administrator I now see more to this story than I did on first reading because of our class tonight. When we look at children, it is very important that we try to see all the stories that make up that child's reality so that we can make a difference in shaping his/her tomorrow. Also, as leaders we should be taking steps to help change man's focus on self so that we don't destroy our world.

Jackie I agree after class I looked at the book a bit different in terms of our discussion and how others interpreted the book.
Stories are important.. as long as we can get the "real" one out of the kids. You know how some of those kids can tell a whopper of a story.

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Kami McKay


Fri Mar 09, 2007 5:50 pm
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The big idea that I take from Ishmael is: The more I try to make the world to be a place that I want it to be, the less I'm going to like it.

The moral? ...Each one of us holds a part of the vision..."it's about letting the rest of the community live.." (250). No pushin gnd shoving, just living.


Thu Mar 15, 2007 4:17 pm
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