Seeing the Picture Clearly

The whole picture to little bit hard to see sometimes.

There are those of us, though, who see it much better than others. For them, the picture is clear. They have this natural feeling of what should come next and how the pieces fit together. And best of all, they tend to describe what they see in a way we all can understand.

When we find those people we should hold onto them for dear life, as they are articulate and amazing. One such person who sees the whole picture and ensures that things come together is Kipp Bentley, The Executive Director of Interdisciplinary Learning.

I believe it is the moving parts we struggle with most.

The moving parts scare us because there are so many of them and we feel like we could slip in between the cracks of each one. There is no trust in moving parts because you can’t fully believe that something will be there when you need it. So, we make temporary schematics that last for only a few moments while are in the meeting room with other moving parts, until we disperse again and become parts of the different whole.

But, Kipp knows what all of the moving parts are, and because of this, he can navigate them fluidly. He sees them all as systems of support, pushing back and forth, rather than shifting under his feet. He can authentically use phrases like “sides of the house” to describe the way in which teaching and learning, technology and other components all fit. There is a certain art some people like Kipp have for showing the connections, and making them real for us.

Kipp doesn’t just meet, he mentors.

It is the knowledge of where you go from here that is most powerful. I have learned that the easiest way to make a next step is in knowing that you are making the right one. The only way to do that is to have an advocate, and above all Kipp is that. He’s an advocate for things he believes in, and what he believes other should too.

It is in this advocacy that Kipp’s ability to see the whole picture coalesces. It’s only someone who is can advocate, see clearly, and listen for new information that  can truly bring about change and start to think through the implications of our decisions, both the good and the bad.

So I will miss Kipp as a partner when he leaves this summer. One great regret I have is that I did not come to DPS sooner in order to see what he sees on a regular basis.

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