My Dog Buddy, May Hold the Key to Better Staff Development.


We have had our new dog for a little more than a week. Actually, truth be told, I am pretty sure I am now living in Buddy’s house (I am actually supposed to address him as Mr. Buddy… so I am glad he isn.t much of a blog reader).

His standard of living is quite remarkable for a year and a half old unemployed Beagle.

He has been a relatively gracious host so far. More impressive is how fast he has risen to the top of the family pecking order.

It took me years of stalking to win over my wife.

Buddy shows up and in 2 minutes she is smooching on him. I don’t want to get into the sordid details of my first kiss with her, but it didn’t come in 2 minutes.

I am not as jealous of him as I am impressed.

Say what you want, but the dog has skills.

He likes the ladies and the ladies like him.

It seems like he has been part of our family for much longer than a few days. Maybe that’s because I have to get up at 5:00 am to walk him.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining. Soon I will be in the best shape of my life thanks to dragging this dog around town for approximately 18 miles a day.

For the most part he has been the perfect pet. He barks about once every 2 days. He doesn’t like human food. He won’t jump on the furniture. And he walks over to the door that goes to the garage around 9:30 every night as a clear indication that he is ready for bed in his crate.

The aforementioned makes him a better housemate than my daughter. You have to force her to bed. Often times by using some sort of wrestling maneuver or headlock to drag her dead weight body towards the bedroom.

The kicking and screaming almost wakes the dog up. Notice I said almost. Buddy can literally be walking along and pass out. He is asleep before his head hits his brand new L.L. Bean bed with his name stitched on it (in his favorite color I am told).img_1404

She thinks 9:30 is way too early to go to bed. Actually, she thinks 2:00 am is too early. I have already suggested that she stay away from the early morning classes in college.

Of course, she doesn’t get up at 5 to walk her dog, so what does she care about going to bed early.

I have run into one small problem when I walk him. He won’t “turn in his homework.”

Not page #1 or page #2.

I walked him 4 miles once and he wouldn’t squat on a bet.

Originally, I thought the dog had some sort of gift.

Or 2 bladders.

Turns out neither is true.

After spending 3 days thinking about this riddle wrapped up in an enigma, I finally came to a conclusion.

He is a show dog. Actually former show dog.

They say he got kicked out of the ring because he got too big. If you ask me that is code for “dogroids”, but as always I’m not here to judge.

Although it would explain his mood swings and the ability to exercise for hours on end. Not to mention the fact that he has two shrunken… well, you get the point (if you don’t, email me).

This could be from his surgery, but who really knows in this day and age.

Training a dog can be a challenge. Untraining one is even harder.

It reminds me of teachers and staff members (the PrincipalsPage.com legal department wants it noted that I am in no way comparing teachers to dogs… or vice versa as I don’t want to insult either group).

We all have a tendency to get stuck in our ways. I include myself in this group.

Once we are trained, we stay trained.

That is why it is so important to get new employees started off on the right foot.

Part of this training should be teaching new staff members that flexibility is the key to success.

As a teacher, administrator, janitor, or secretary who works with students, we have to be willing to adjust throughout our careers.

Each new group of students (every 4 years or so) has different needs and ways of learning. We can’t expect them to respond to our methods that we may have first learned during student teaching 20 years ago.

We can’t always fight change. We have to seek it out and embrace it.

Sure it makes us nervous. And it makes our belly hurt (especially Buddy’s). And it makes it hard to get comfortable for a nap (Buddy and I).

If someone shows us a better way, our students deserve the opportunity to learn under a new progressive system that better fits their style of learning.

Sooner or later, we are all asked to try new methods. Instead of fighting it, maybe we should just “turn in our homework” the first time.

It might just help kids.

And it might save me 18 miles of walking a dog (I really wish Buddy… I mean Mr. Buddy could read this).

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While this site operates with the knowledge and awareness of the Tuscola CUSD #301 School Board, Tuscola, Illinois, the content and opinions posted here may or may not represent their views personally or collectively, nor does it attempt to represent the official viewpoint of Tuscola CUSD #301 administrators or employees.