Memorable Moments in an Alien World

{December 20, 2012}   Power Colours

Approximately one year ago, I was getting ready for my first IEP meeting (for those outside of the special education realm – which I do hope is most of my readers – all 3 of you! – an IEP is an individualized education plan. Every one of my students has one, that has highly specified academic and life skills goals that legally must be worked on and documented and PROVEN as either having been met or not met in the yearly aforementioned IEP meeting. It’s a legal meeting to discuss a legal document). As a new teacher, I was pretty psyched out for this meeting. There was going to be a lawyer and an advocate and all of these outside service providers. And I’m leading it all.

Short version? I was freakin’ terrified. You know, in a totally in-control, calm way (of course).

In the days leading up to it, I found myself dreaming about this meeting, the paperwork, getting verbally cornered by a lawyer, etc.

I finally called a fellow SPED teacher and confessed that I was a raw bundle of nerves and it would not take much to completely incapacitate me. She gave me a lot of advice, most of it very pragmatic, regarding paperwork, HOW to phrase certain ideas, how to make goals legally airtight, how to present bad news, etc.

I’m not gonna lie. It is likely to extremely likely that I have since forgotten most of the advice. However, there is ONE statement she made that left an indelible mark on me. “Amanda, you’ll be fine; you just need to wear a power color.”

Not being a power-color sort of girl, I looked in my closet the night before the IEP and the next day I wore the one item of red clothing that I owned. The IEP went ridiculously better than I expected and though I know…I think…maybe…that the success was not because I wore red, but because I’m a competent educator, I can’t help but think of power color clothes every time I get ready for an IEP.

It’s a story barely worth telling, but that one piece of advice stuck with me. If you want to wow ’em, you’d better be wearing the right colors!

power colors

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