Archive for November 13, 2010

“Great Followers Make the Best Leaders” – Yes, that’s right!

Today I’ll continue with some more education quotes in what I started in yesterday’s blog.  I agree with “Great Followers Make the Best Leaders.” Why is that true, I may continue blogging tomorrow on that theme. For now, I keep grappling with the erroneous phrase that I read which smacks of  Soviet mentality: “Great Leaders Create Great Followers.” I know this must be Soviet thinking because it was written by a 49 year old Kazakh female teacher from Ust-Kamenogorsk, Kazakhstan who was trained in communist thinking.  You may have a “great” leader who creates many followers but if they are blindly following him, as they did with Hitler and Stalin, the masses will eventually suffer.

However, a truly great leader effectively grooms the next leader  to take his place.  In some sense according to the following Kazakh saying, mothers are the great leaders of any nation: “The country is ruled by mothers sitting beside cradles.” Servant leadership in doing the menial tasks, the giving up of one self to help those who will come after you.

That’s what a great teacher does, like a self-sacrificing mother, according to this quote: “A good teacher is like a candle, it consumes itself to light the way for others.” However, what I found in one of the applications I read is more Soviet thinking in the teacher-centered approach with this quote: “The teacher who knows less, can’t give much.” A good spin on that last quote is a saying attributed to John Cotton Dana (1856-1929) “Who dares to teach must never cease to learn.”

I found several good quotes by John F. Kennedy who is known to have said: “Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education.  The human mind is our fundamental resource.” I think the president of this country of Kazakhstan said something similar with this quote I pulled out from an app: “Education is a crucial device to develop human capital.  That is why our primary challenge is to put in place an efficient educational system able to meet the economic needs.”

Another quote by JFK was the following: “A child miseducated is a child lost.” Or in other words not as eloquent: “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” Finally, Civil War General Robert E. Lee had this to say: “The education of a man is never completed until he dies.”

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