Tony Gurr

What is SUCCESS?

In Assessment, Classroom Teaching, Learning & Parenting, Our Schools, Our Universities on 23/06/2013 at 11:03 am

A few weeks ago I stumbled on a great image:

Success (what it really looks like) TG ver

…quite by coincidence one of my favourite EDUbloggers (@ktvee) created a wonderful poster based on a quote from Will Rogers (yes…the “cowboy”)!


I decided to “bring” them together:

What success looks like (Will Rogers quote) TG ver 02

I thunk this is now called “creative curation“…in the blogosphere these days!


You see…I have been working on an upcoming session…on quality initiatives in EDUcation I wonder where my inspiration used to come frombefore the web (remember, I lived 60% of my life before the internet was even invented)!




Neyse, during my “curation” phase…I found a few guys who just kinda “missed the point“:


Success (Lincoln quote)

Funny…yes! BUT…would you raise your kids to BE like this?


As an EDUcatorwould you want this to be the mantra of your CLASSroom?


That last quote reminded me of something a dear friend had said to me…when I was was thinking of making the move to big, bad İstanbul. I had told him that one of the reasons I had put off coming here was that…the “wicked lady” of the North-West had always “scared” me (yes, I know I grew up on the rough, tough streets of North Manchester…but…İstanbul is way bigger)!

I explained that many people in (not “from”) İstanbul were not really “my Turks”…that they tended to be a bit more forceful…a bit more aggressive …dare I say it, less tolerant and welcoming (than my typical Anatolian brothers and sisters). He agreed and explained why…


He also noted that İstanbullular have also changed over the past few years (during all that time I was “partying” in Dubai)…they have become much more “uyanık“!

Once again, Google Translate…thank you…for nothing!  


Thank God…for the Urban Dictionary…yes, wide boy (or “girl“) is a far better way to translate “uyanık“.


Sadly, there are many parents here (as there are all over the world) that LEARN their kids that it is important to be a Jack-the-Lad (or Jill-the-Lass)…this is how we succeed in a place like big, bad İstanbul…this is how we “play the game“.

The game of “oneupsmanship“…


The game of…

Winning (Charlie Sheen)

And, yes…I do get the “irony” of my recent 500K Competition and Celebration!


But, and hear me out, here…that’s different…and I thunk it goes a bit deeper than the recent trend towards more “uyanıklık”.

Much of it is embedded in culture…in EDUcational culture.

You’ve probably seen me rant about the woes of the EXAMocracy here…in canım Türkiyem:

Canım EXAMocracy (TG ver 03)


…and the ADHOCocrats that run educational policy and many (most) of our schools!


Many of my friends tell me that this is NOTnew“…been coming for decades…even Bill Gates and his GERM-like “reformers” have been jealous of the TESTing climate in canım Türkiyem for years.


This “trend” has been hard-wired into our cultural DNA (yes, I can say this now…”Vatandaşlik Immunity“)! But, I’m still careful what I tweet about…


You see, in canim Turkiyem, we do not “pass” an examwe “WIN” one.

We do not “gain” or “get” a place at University – we “WIN” one.

The way we do both is by … being very street-savvy in our TEST-taking (and, oh boy, we have a TEST for every occasion – from “conception” to “resurrection”…OK, in the afterlife sense).

Hell, we even “cancel” the last three years of High-School…just to make sure our kiddies “win” the university exam…and “win” a place at university!


And, we wonder…why so many of our kids ask that question of questions:

So will this be on the test (Ver 03)

Day IN…Day OUT!


Maybe…just maybeit’s time to LEARN our kids a new question:

Success (TG ver and Kaufman quote)


Maybe it’s time to LEARN our parents…and ourselves!

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