Thursday, 3 September 2015

Putting myself in the learners shoes

It turns out learning is hard. Especially if it is in an area that is not particularly 'your thing'.

I have a passion and interest in literacy and I mostly enjoy being challenged and put in the pit in this area.

Sport is not my area. And I have traumatic childhood memories of skiing. Nevertheless, I decided that it was something I should have another go at. 

Conditions were ideal - the sun was shining, there had been a little extra top up snow overnight, I had all the gear I needed and some supportive friends. 

I got out on the learners slope and was zipping up and down there in no time. It was time for the next step. The chairlift. This was my big barrier. But with some perseverance and grit I managed that - and experienced the joy that comes after conquering the pit. And to top it all off, I had been convinced that the bigger chairlift was just as easy as the smaller one.

And that's about where the good part of the day ends.

The mountain was too big. My legs were too tired. My determination diminished. I was trying to run before I could walk.

And will I go skiing again? Not this year.

I took away from this experience a few things as a learner.
1) Conditions have to be ideal in order for positive learning experience outside of someones comfort zone.
2) A gentle push is OK. But always take the smallest step to build the learner up.
3) When a learner says enough is enough - STOP now. It is likely they will come back to it and pick up from where they left off.

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