Yesterday at the Beyond the Textbook forum, I had the privilege of hearing Angela Maiers speak about her program aimed at kids owning their genius. It made me think. I was surrounded by people who I believe are geniuses in their own right. Yet, as I thought of myself and who I am, I found myself questioning my own knowledge YET again…albeit briefly, but I did.
I am a habitual learner. On a whim, if something appeals to me, I self-teach. It is who I am. The problem is that when you have so many bits and pieces of knowledge, what you are great at…what you can honestly contribute to the world, can easily get lost in the shuffle. It was mind boggling to me that I could not think of one single thing that I was a genius of. I posed this thought on twitter and a great friend, Paul Wood, responded so eloquently that I literally just need to embed it.
@rafranzdavis Actually that is your genius expanding, stretching and growing.
— Paul R Wood (@paulrwood) March 29, 2013
Reading Paul’s response, it hit me how valuable and different such a trait is. Often, we seal ourselves inside of the box of our jobs, titles, degrees…etc. I’ve never sat well in a box. I’ve always been the type of person who reflects and makes it a point to change. It’s not that I am self critical, I just own what I do well and what I do not. It’s that simple. There is no gray area to that.
Different people have their own perceptions of me and what I do. My kids think that I am a genius at math and technology. My school hopes that I know math really well and are coming to realize that I can help with technology integration too. I actually find that interesting for various reasons.
What I have come to accept is that I am a genius at not just learning but expanding, stretching and growing as needed. If that is something that I can use to help change the world, than so be it. It just so happens that I know a little bit about math and technology and that just might be helpful along the way.