Did you know the way we think about a situation before we enter it will greatly effect its outcome?
Urban legend has it that a local school district did an experiment. The district superintendent called three teachers from within the district into her office and told them they were the three “best” teachers in the entire district and thanked them for their hard work, dedication and effort.
She went on to say they were working on a special project and they had selected the top 90 students, the “best” 90 students in the district and they wanted each of the three teachers to take 30 students for the entire year to see what the “best teachers” could achieve with the “best students.”
The superintendent wanted to see how much the 90 students could progress in one year compared to all the other students in the district. At the end of the year, when the grades came out, the “best” kids who were with the “best” teachers tested 28% higher than the rest of the kids in the district.
It was after the testing that the superintendent called the teachers in and told them she had a confession to make. She said, “The students we gave you to teach were not above average in any way shape or form. In fact we pulled their names randomly from the computer.”
Can you imagine how the teachers must have felt? Betrayed? Hurt? Arrogant? Why arrogant? Well, once the teachers found out they didn’t have the “best” students they soon realized they were “better” than the “best” teachers. They were given average students and through their ability to teach they had the children in their classrooms test higher than any other child in the district! What an amazing accomplishment for each of these teachers.
I’m sure the teachers felt pretty good about the experiment. They had taken ordinary kids and made them the best!
The superintendent wasn’t finished speaking to the teachers so she continued, “I have another confession to make. It is true that we selected each child randomly from the computer and it is also true that we selected each one of you teachers randomly as well.” Wait, what?
This so called “experiment” was supposed to be the “best” teachers with the “best” students to see what the “best” outcome could be. This wasn't an experiment to see what the ordinary could do with the ordinary, or was it?
Maybe the superintendent just wanted to see what would happen if she told the three teachers “YOU ARE THE BEST” at what you do.
Maybe the power of those four words could alter the outcome of both students and teachers.
Maybe it would somehow change how the teachers viewed themselves and how they viewed their students.
Maybe she just wanted to see what the right attitude would do to the learning environment.
This urban legend isn’t about smart teachers, smart kids or high test scores it’s about understanding who each of us are and if you haven’t heard it today, “YOU ARE THE BEST!” And, that person next to you, that one in the line at your favorite coffee spot, yeah, they are the best too! I wonder what would happen today if you looked at them and told them, “YOU ARE THE BEST” and I just wanted you to know!
I would like to see what the right attitude would do to our work environments, wouldn’t you? I wonder what would happen if we had “the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.” Philippians 2:5GW
Let’s not be complacent today. Let’s not go through our daily motions checking items or people off our “to do” list. Let’s not forget that every person we come in contact with today is a soul, a saint, a student! Someone who needs love, encouragement, a hug or a high-five. Someone to believe in them, cheer for them, walk with them, talk with them, tell them YOU ARE THE BEST!
Reminder: The way we think about a situation before we enter it will greatly effect its outcome.
Question: Is there a person or situation that would greatly improve if you simply had the right attitude? Is there a situation that could improve if we changed the way we thought about it?
Photo Credit: shutterstock.com Image ID: 142753645 Copyright: Heather Nicaise