Practice and the 5WC

Memorial Day Practice by Sister72 on Flickr
Memorial Day Practice by Sister72 on Flickr

Mary Jane left a comment that I didn’t have time to properly reply to this morning.  I don’t really feel I have the brainpower to properly reply right now either, but I should at least try.

Basically, she encouraged me to not forget about actually practicing what I learned from Renner.  And, despite all my reading about experiential learning, I’m wondering whether practicing things I’ve learned fits into this project.

It all comes down to this:

  • I wrote learning objectives while I was unlearned (they focus on gaining a broader awareness of the field).
  • MJ’s advice is in line with the reading I’ve done so far, but would divert me from my stated objectives (by pursuing more depth than I’d planned to).
  • I still like my objectives, but I’m only marginally more learned than when I wrote them.

My current compromise:

I think that right now, or rather tomorrow, I can go back through what I learned from Renner and select a few promising tidbits that might be particularly useful to me in the near future.  I’m looking to go beyond activity ideas to other points I might work with less directly.  It would start a short-list for what to put into practice when the opportune moment arrives.  Maybe that moment will be this Thursday, or maybe not for a month or two.  Either way, I’ll be ready.

Future considerations:

I would like to build intentional practice into future 5WCs, and I think it would be well-suited to a relatively narrow topic.

I’d also like to learn more from books and other teachers before deciding what to subject my students to.

Also, after a slightly strange conversation with a long-time business manager today, I realized that I do act upon very clear  priorities: students first; volunteers second; administration/accountability/curriculum third; everything else if I have time.  5WCs would end up being in the “everything else” category at work because they’re not directly and immediately focused on the students.  I’d have to be strategic about when I decided to implement a practice-based 5WC or else it would just be another good idea I didn’t have time for.

Other ideas for what to do are welcome!  I won’t necessarily act upon them, but I would enjoy the chance to consider them.

2 thoughts on “Practice and the 5WC

  1. Oh, I didn’t mean to imply that you should build practice into your five-week course. I just remember all the times I said “Oh wow, this was great, I have to remember to do this the next time I deliver a training/write a curriculum/prepare pre- and post-tests” etc… and somehow it never seemed to happen and what I learned was forgotten to the mists of time. 🙂

    Pick those things you want to follow up on and plan when you’ll do them; if they’re not things you can assign to a date, post your “Next Training Development To Do List” on your bulletin board or something… however it works for you, make some sort of plan to put what you learned and want to try into action before you lose it.

  2. I realize this isn’t really a comment directly related to your posting, but you’ve inspired me to create my own 5WC and I was wondering if I could send out a call to you and your readers (or at least those who read the comments) a request for suggestions. I’d like to delve deeper into group facilitation skills/public speaking, and I’m in the resource-gathering phase. Do you have any suggestions? I currently have a book called “Moving Beyond Icebreakers: An Innovative Approach to Group Facilitation, Learning and Action.” I’m open to various forms of media, websites, organizations, etc.

    Thanks for the great idea! I really like the notion that we are responsible for our own learning. I wish it didn’t seem so novel…

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