The Followers

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It is getting into crunch time for the Mongol trial and I’ve spent a good portion of the day editing my opening statement and getting feedback on that.

We also have a special “fancy” document for our team that has potential examination questions on it in a color coded table so that it is easy to tell which argument it goes with. On the table there is also a section for potential answers. I have found it interesting because we never told the witnesses that they needed to fill out potential answers to all of those questions, but everyone has answered almost all of the questions for their character anyway. I predict that it is because we made the document that way and had added a few suggestions ourselves (the plural being myself and my team captain) so they just filled it in because it was there and perhaps they really did want to make sure they are prepared.

This trial has made me think a lot about what it means to be a leader. We can’t all be the leader at once, so that means some people have to be followers. At school, while we want people to be leaders, Kat gave a great quote early on in the year that was something like, “How can we expect to create leaders in a system that produces followers?” (referring to school)

We all really connected with this statement because in school so often you just are doing what the teacher tells you to do, and for some people they need that. Not everyone is prepared to just be a leader all of a sudden when a teacher says “ok it is time for you to be the leader of your learning now and I’m not going to give any direction at all.” There isn’t a magic flip you can turn on that just makes a person a leader; that’s not how it works.

I’ve noticed though, that by giving an outline of how to go about a task like this, people will do the work. I feel like schools try to define some students as “underachievers” way to generally. I’m even shifting my own perspective of fellow classmates. High schoolers don’t all just naturally want to be lazy and put in as little work as possible, I’m starting to think that a lot of the time students just don’t naturally think of other things to do so they don’t do anything past what is told to them.

There are students that will do whatever you tell them to or even just suggest for them to do, but you still need to come up with the idea for them because that is how they learn. It is still a skill to be really good at following directions because not everyone can be the person giving directions all of the time, so HMW cater to those students that need direction?

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