Science teachers, purple cows and the case of the flaming wallet

So you want a book to read? What’s it to be? 103 Ways to become a more effective standards-based teacher. No? Well, here’s a great little book called Purple Cow by Seth Godin, a truly incredible mind in marketing. You want to go to the local bookstore and pick it up because it says a lot to teachers.

Purple Cow tells of a trip that Seth took through France with his family. His kids saw these cows grazing and were amazed. A few miles down the road they saw more cows but were less excited. Half an hour of cows and they were bored. But imagine if the kids looked out the window and saw a purple cow. Now that would be remarkable. Remark-able is when somebody makes a remark about you. And that is the point of the book.

Whether we are in advertising, sales or teaching, remarkable is an important place for us to be. Seth points out that the opposite of “remarkable”? is “very good”?. Do you want to be very good? In a short space of time, very good becomes commonplace.

Look at what we do as science teachers. We get the opportunity to be remarkable all the time. We get to make the flaming stuff that comes out of a bottle. We get to shoot the potatoes. I have a wallet that catches on fire. I can reach into my pocket, pull out this wallet, which catches on fire and turns into money. Imagine the opportunities to showcase this when checking into a hotel, or when the waiter arrives to take my order. Is it remark-able? Yes. To this day I go back to that same hotel and the person at the bell stand says: “does your wallet still catch on fire?”? They remember it because it was remark-able.

I recommend you pick up Purple Cow by Seth Godin because it will solidify in your mind to create experiences that are remarkable for our students.

Listen to my podcast on being remarkable all the time

(File size is 2.1 MB) (Show length 4 minutes 29 seconds)

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