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WHEN VIEWING ON A TABLET OR MOBILE -- DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM participation in our society. The school, and not the student, his family, its income, or neighborhood bears the major share of the responsibility for this inadequacy.” 2. The Teacher Role: “The teacher is the catalyst in the process of learn- ing; the student, his family, [and the] curriculum are all contribut- ing factors but it is the teacher who guides and directs the learning process.” 3. Training of Teachers: “By totally immersing the trainee in the class- room from the first day of school under the close supervision of experienced teachers, theory is married to practice. Interns can dis- cover for themselves what teaching is all about.” When I started out, I was not the official teacher of record. That title belonged to Mary Johnson, my master teacher and supervisor. I worked for a year under her thoughtful, creative, experienced mentorship. The other corps members and I were given loads of support, encouragement, feedback, and patience. I was fresh out of college and was eager to absorb everything my coach had to offer. At the end of the year, I had an evaluation. Ms. Johnson wrote the fol- lowing: “Mr. Sykes creates engaging, challenging, and intellectually stimulating activities for the boys who are in his care. He is right on the mark in terms of active learning and the robust intellectual engagement that we had desired when we first established this arrangement. However, sometimes it is difficult to distinguish Mr. Sykes from the boys he teaches.” At twenty-three, I was pretty devastated by the last part. Even though Ms. Johnson likely meant that last sentence as more of a joke, at my current age and with my cumulative life experiences, I view being seen as one of the boys I was teaching as the highest compliment that could ever be paid. I understand now that I went beyond the surface of teaching. I was on my own learning curve, and I wasn’t afraid to roll up my sleeves and learn what makes children tick. That was the foundation that enabled me to become a lifelong learner of child, organizational, and leadership development. Real leaders need to be willing to reflect on their abilities and experiences. They need to get their hands dirty. Chapter 1 COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL