When I was young I would watch Star Trek with my Dad every Sunday afternoon. As I grew older I would watch old episodes after I got home from school. Let’s just say I have a slight love affair with Star Trek. (Thank-gooodness I found out early on in our relationship that my fiance is a closet Trekkie!!)
One of the reasons I love Star Trek is the philosophy that the universe is out there for us to explore. Curiosity is one of the driving forces for the show. Along with predictable plot and story lines one of the reasons I enjoyed the show as a child was the humanity shown in the show. Although each series has a diverse cast of characters, they are all characters that clearly demonstrate various traits found in human nature. Once you got to know the characters you would often know how they would react to certain situations. Of course like any good story when conflict arose characters often bucked the inner conflict and surprised you with actions you would never have expected.
After one weekend Star Trek viewing session I got thinking… what if we cast ourselves (teachers) as characters from the various series?
Which Star Trek Character are you?
Are you like Captain Kirk, Captain Janeway or Captain Sisko? Do you have an insatiable curiosity and are you constantly wanting to explore the world around you. Are you a fearless leader who isn’t afraid to break the rules every now and then? I think all good leaders know the rules but are willing to bend them once in a while in the name of curiosity and moral obligation.
Perhaps you are like Spock and Tuvok who are both altruistic and noble. A teacher whose logic battles your inner emotions when making decisions. We all know this character as the one who thinks every option through and once they have weighed all their options, they come up with a decision. Logic dictates all. (I tease my fiance that if he was on Star Trek, this is the character that he would be – Logic is his greatest strength and weakness).
Or perhaps you are like Neelix. Although you have a dark past you are always willing to try new things and looking on the bright side of life. Being an optimist is a trait that is vital as an educator. In the world we live in if we were pessimists we wouldn’t survive long teaching simply because of the number of things we see and hear on a daily basis. Life is tough but it takes it optimist to overcome the hurdles it throws us.
Are you like the Borg? Do you seek to assimilate others into the collective having long forgotten what it is like to be an individual in the education system? This is something that I have through my various experiences in the educational field. I find that people often pretend they are part of the collective but complain bitterly behind closed doors. This is something that has always bothered me.Why complain if you are unwilling to do something to change the system you are a part of? A collective also becomes static and cumbersome as time passes, something I think that educational reformists are currently grappling with.
So who am I as educator?
This a concept that is constantly evolving and changing.
I would argue that I am a combination of all of the above. I don’t believe that anyone would fit solely into one category because we are all a mishmash of all these characteristics. I am curious and I love to learn. Let’s face it you don’t end up in teaching, a constant engagement in Twitter and blogging because you lack curiosity. Learning is addictive and awesome!
I am also drawn to the collective, something that is a natural human instinct, after all we all like to belong. But within a collective I like to march to the beat of my own drum. I like to see the big picture and take calculated risks. This is where I fit into the category of Kirk and Janeway. I like to bend the rules in order to achieve ‘the greater good’. Logic is sometimes my weak point. Sometimes I simply concede to serendipity and Murphy’s Law rather than thinking things through logically once I have reached what I regard to be the end of the road. (I mull things over a long time before ‘jump in’. I don’t know if that is logic or not?) I am also a bit of an idealist and like to look on the bright side of life. I know for a fact that things always work out. No matter where you thought you would be, the path that you end up on is the one that you were made for. I also like to think that I can make big impacts on people’s lives and that those impacts can in-turn change the world. Who knows if this is true. Time will only tell.
As an educator which Star Trek character are you?
P.S. The highlight of my year may have been when I taught my 4th graders what the term “Live Long and Prosper” meant. #eduawesome