Saturday, January 25, 2014

The Three Most Annoying Teachers At Staff Development Meetings

Monday, in my opinion, was by far one of the most productive staff development days...EVER! Rather than sitting through the usual session after session, listening to a parade of education specialists, the Special Education powers-that-be planned our staff development (SD) day as a Make and Take opportunity for the teaching staff to create new learning materials or complete other projects in progress..

Take a peek at the projects my team completed.

Admittedly, I started the SD meeting in a foul mood (It had nothing to do with the fact several school districts celebrated MLK day and my district opted not to) thanks to a lack of seating in a cramped, toasty room. After viewing a brief instructional video (devised to ignite a spark of inspiration), the facilitators provided a quick run down of the itinerary and dismissed the participants. Like ants at a picnic, everyone scurried upstairs to set up camp, so to speak. 

As I walked a lap around the work room looking for some prime "real estate," a stack of paint swatches grabbed my attention. Quickly, I dropped my messenger bag and dashed to a table. Apparently, the same idea popped into the minds of several other teachers. The next thing I knew, hands were grabbing every which-a-way. As I continued to ravage the tables, a couple of colleagues mistakenly grabbed MY new-found materials, which almost kicked-off an all-out no holds barred brawl. Thanks to my ninja skills and quick cat like reflexes, I held on to my new finds. HAA! Check out the cool Popsicle sticks.

I threw this color matching game together with the paint swatches. Perhaps next time I will die-cut the swatches into paint buckets and brushes. 

So, I bet you're waiting to hear about the three most annoying people you'll meet at a staff development meeting. First, a brief psychology refresher. From many years of being gainfully employed, I have learned the following... 

When working with or participating in activities with groups of people, certain annoying personalities emerge. Carl Jung referred to these "personalities," as personas or masks. 

Some individuals use their personas, as a defense mechanism, which allows them to display very little vulnerability when moving in and out of relationships (personal or professionals). The lack of vulnerability often produces people who are arrogant, discourteous,  and  well...just annoying. Okay enough of the psychology lesson (I guess I did learn something in college).

  • The EXPERT: This individual knows it ALL...or thinks they do. The EXPERT provides their unsolicited opinion whether they're knowledgeable about the subject...or not. I am more than sure you've run into this type at many professional development meetings. Although they may know it all, their lack of humility and arrogant demeanor makes them annoying, which sometimes creates friction in the professional environment. In my opinion, there's a difference between being knowledgeable and humble versus being knowledgeable and pompous. 

  • Chatty McGee: This type comes in all varieties: loud-talker (looking for attention), sidebar talker, gossipy talker, the saying-a-lot-but-saying-nothing talker, etc.  Some of the Chatty McGees hold sidebar conversation, often distracting other participants. When this occurs, I glare at the offenders giving off STHU vibes. Some of us take our professional vocation  seriously, and we want to hear what the presenter has to say. And the fact that I can hear you from across the room telling everyone about your mani-pedi means two things: #1...You talk too damn loud and #2...You are annoying.

  • The Comedian (a.k.a The Class Clown): Let me start by saying"You are not funny." This participant's ill timed barbs border on annoying and sometimes sophomoric.  I'm no Mindy Kahling, but I know funny when I see & hear it. 
To the class clowns and wannabe comedians:
A  word of advice, 
"Every silence does not have to be filled with the sound of your voice...or in this case horrific jokes."

What type of people annoy you at staff development meetings?


  1. That was hilarious! I hate the know it alls:)!

  2. Hi Trina. Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog. Plus, I'm so glad I headed over to visit you because:
    1. I can't believe you had to go to school on MLK day.
    2. I would LOVE to have a Make & Take staff meeting - amazing idea! More people should think like you!
    I'm happy to be your newest follower, too.

  3. Thanks for the good laugh! I mostly get annoyed by people who start every comment with, "In my classroom, I... " as if no one else had ever done that or thought of that idea. I suppose they would be the know it all types but I call them braggers. There is a tasteful way to tell about what you are doing without sounding like a know it all, right? Your make and take session looks like a wonderful way to spend the day! Thank you for sharing the activities!

    Creative Lesson Cafe

  4. Hahaha go Ninja Cat!!! I agree and I agree with Jeannine above- ugh. Those people who continuously pipe up with "Well the way I do it," "What I do," "In my room." I I I Me Me Me UGHHHHHH I want to high five their face with a chair- cause you can damn near guarantee that the ones talking themselves up like this are NOT the ones you want to be learning from in the first place.

    Whoa- your post made me mad just thinking about meetings! ahhahaha!

    x Serena x
    Magic Mistakes & Mayhem

  5. Lol! Funny. I saw your post on the BER page on Facebook and I thought I should support another ed blogger! You forgot about the "Whiner." That's another harrowing voice you hear in staff development or PD sessions.

    Great post!