Learning through leading: a self study

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Kiatipis, Amanda
The primary purpose of this self-study was to understand my own role as a formal teacher leader and dive deeper into the narrative of my history and future journey in teacher leadership. As I entered into a new teacher leadership role I became curious about why I continued to receive these leadership roles in the short six years of my career. What leadership qualities do I have that make me successful in leadership positions? What leadership qualities do I need to develop further? Using a narrative approach to data collection, I collected stories and reflections from my experiences in leadership over 20 weeks. A second form of data collection included recording daily actions and thoughts for 20 days in January. Both qualitative sources of data were analyzed for trends and themes. The daily actions and thoughts were coded for how they reflected my underlying belief systems. The findings of this study indicate that I have six core beliefs around leadership that include valuing collaboration, being adaptive to others and situations, being confident, honest, vulnerable, brave, kind, approachable and empathetic, having high expectations and accountability of self and others, effective communication and trusting relationships. The implications of this self-study include the importance of having high expectations as a leader, noticing and utilizing others strengths, being a present and reflective practitioner and the continued promotion of teachers as leaders for educational change.
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