Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Quarterbacks and Teachers

I just finished reading a great article by Malcolm Gladwell. He draws a parallel between teachers and NFL Quarterbacks. I hadn't thought of it before but I think there is something to it. The Quarterback dilemma states that you can never tell if a college quarterback will ever make it in the NFL because you can never replicate the set of conditions that exist in the NFL, so you can never evaluate the candidate. There are a litany of examples that back up the theory.

Good teachers are worth their weight in gold as everyone knows, but how can you find them. I think the analogy to the quarterbacks is fair - you can never tell the characteristics that would make someone a great teacher as you can never recreate the circumstance of 25 children in front you and you with something to teach.

Maybe rather than selecting better candidates for teaching we need to simply try more people at it, find those that have "it" and train them.

Interesting...thanks Malcolm you always leave me thinking.

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