# those without passion…please exit to the left.

I like TED talks. If you haven’t stumbled across these yet then head here…http://www.ted.com/talks

I have knocked off around 400 of these on topics as far-reaching as retrofitting suburbia to how to make a toaster from scratch to the paradox of choice. There is one single thread to all these talks. The speakers are electric bundles of well-educated passion. It draws you into their world. Its engaging. You want to know more. Its seductive.

When someone is thoroughly engaged in their discipline, in authentic and active ways, we tend to reflect their enthusiasm.


Are we passionate about the teaching & the learning of our students?

“Passionately committed teachers are those who absolutely love what they do.They are constantly searching for more effective ways to reach their children, to master the content and methods of their craft. They feel a personal mission…to learning as much as they can about the world, about others, about themselves – and helping others to do the same (Zehm & Kotler, 1993:118)

Here are a few indicators of passionate teachers – based on my professional experience.

Passionate teachers…

  1. Cannot get enough PD – they are on every course they can attend to improve what they do + they excitedly share what they have learned on their return (even if not asked to!) – Does PD excite us?
  2. Connect with other passionate teachers – Via twitter personal learning networks, teach meets, conference networking, at lunch time etc…Who are the best teachers (locally/globally) in our disciplines?
  3. Talk about teaching & learning – they can’t go a day without thinking about, reflecting and chatting about teaching & learning in some way. They read books about it and their eyes light up when you mention pedagogy. When was the last lunchtime chat we had about pedagogy?
  4. Project energy. Though teaching is a thoroughly consuming profession, it is clear to see those who love what they do. We all get tired and have those long days, however, what is our default setting. If we surveyed students/teachers would they say we are smitten with our chosen profession?

To be fair …lets go the other way..

Apathetic teachers…

  1. Wont touch PD with a barge pole. What has worked will always work forever more. Change is unnecessary.
  2. Live in a cloistered world. Others teaching my subject in the world?…not interested.
  3. Rarely talk about teaching practice or seek feedback about their own teaching practice.
  4. Project blame. Students are lazy, have no attention span, are too busy, the curriculum is too large..yada, yada, yada.

From apathy to passion.

Keen to hear what fosters your passion in your discipline area…send me an e-mail or comment here (if brave!)


Tech tools for passion making:

1. Get onCEPA ! Its in its infancy + full of passionate educators seeking to learn.

2. Join twitter with the purpose of creating a professional learning network

3. Listen to TED talks in your area of expertise + critique too

4. Book some PD in tech Kick-start yourself with some extra iPad training.


Warm regards,


p.s creating teams with passion:


5 thoughts on “# those without passion…please exit to the left.

  1. Some nice practical.ideas. Personally i think No 1 should be to seek and constantly learn and research the ultimate teacher. As Christian teachers we are to be passionate about Christ and reflect that in our teaching methods and the way we become passionate teachers. Being passionate about our teaching comes from Learning from the ultimate teacher – Jesus. I know this may be obvious but i still think it needs to be stated as no 1 and the top of our passion pyramid. All the rest are great practical ideas that can assist us under the guidance of Christ and His teaching and wisdom.

  2. Totally agree. From that foundation we need to work through the pedagogical details. By calling Jesus the ultimate teacher are you equating this being the ultimate educator too? It would lend some difficulty as we cannot add some storm-calming to reiterate our teaching point. I haven’t read much on pedagogy derived from the teaching practices of Jesus…this would be a great read! Will have to think this one through a bit.

  3. Few.. that (first one) got good/interesting after slide 12.

    Challenging things Mr Spreitzer. I feel a need/passion to be constantly updating my subject knowledge (aka language skills and awareness of what’s going on the french speaking world) more than my pedagogy. Could be my subject area? Or …

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