In response to the post, “A Reader Asks… Why You,” a reader writes:
“Common sense wasn’t ‘Common Sense’ until Thomas Paine wrote it.”
It is common knowledge that the LYS reader is smarter that the average educator, but a Thomas Paine reference? That’s just showing off.
However, I am going to use your analogy. Paine didn’t invent his argument. He just took the knowledge, discussions and insights of those he was privy to and wrote it down in a way that way understandable and useful to the man in the street. To be compared to Paine is of course an honor (though I get it, the compliment was made tongue in cheek) but in a small, inconsequential way, it is somewhat valid.
I’m the first to admit that I am not an original thinker, but I do think I’m a pretty good translator. What I write about, talk about and coach on is cribbed from the works of Schmoker, Marzano, Collins, Gladwell, Fullen, and Buckingham, just to name a few. Add that to the fact that I was privileged to work for and with icons such as Schaper, Brown, Brezina, Hooker, Neeley, Sawyer, and Richardson. This means that what comes out of my head is the sum total of their wisdom. My spin is that I figure out how to make that work where the rubber hits the road, on the campus and in the classroom.
Practical, common sense solutions work. I do obsess on the work.
Think. Work. Achieve.