Why is it so Hard for Educators to Focus on Their Own Learning?

Weblogg-ed » Why is it so Hard for Educators to Focus on Their Own Learning?

Will is writing about teachers who just can’t quite grasp what blogging could really do for their own practice. This is where I came in 🙂 One of the main reasons for setting up The Classroom Displays Blog was to influence positively teachers to start seeing how blogging could change their learning landscape. But it’s a slow process and we’re asking an awful lot of people who are already feeling hard pressed. Will says:

And even as I sit in this session with Tim Tyson at Building Learning Communities, one principal says “I want to learn more about these tools so I can help my teachers use them in the classroom.” I want to jump up and say “No! You are missing a step! You want to learn more about these tools for yourself so you can help your teachers learn from them too.”

Quite! Until people actually experience the power of connected learning it’s hard for them to grasp.
Will goes on:

So what’s that all about? Is it just habit? Is it just such a focus on curriculum delivery that “learning” is all about how to do that job better? Is changing the way we do our own business just too darn hard? Or is this such a huge shift, this idea that we can actually learn through the use of technology that most people just don’t think they have to go there, that they can just keep using it as a way to communicate without the surrounding connective tissue where the real learning takes place?

It is a huge shift and maybe people are being asked to do it in too much of a hurry. That head’s desire to ‘get’ it straight away sounds very familiar. There’s no time for teachers to learn this stuff themselves first. They assume they can just teach it, without going through the process themselves. How many times have we seen teachers asked to do this sort of thing before? Non-specialist teaching languages for example? How are they supposed to grasp that this is a paradigm shift after a couple of training sessions?
Listen to Ewan, see what John is saying in your comments. Have a look at what Scotland is up to and you might get a better idea of what is needed:

  • Support, frequent, ongoing, online and face to face support from people who do ‘get it’,
  • Time to pay attention to their own learning,
  • Meaningful solutions to their day to day issues (like “What shall I do with that (*) wall this time?”)
  • and ideally an element of playfulness to sugar the pill and stop them scrunching up their faces in agony.

Or, maybe it’s just me…

  • No, it’s definitely not just you Will 🙂 and it’s not just the US either!
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    One thought on “Why is it so Hard for Educators to Focus on Their Own Learning?

    1. Hi Linda,
      Great bullet points which describe the ideal situation beautifully. Glad to see you got the wall into the second point;-)

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