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Teachers need to ADD !!

As an area of human endeavour education is terribly weak in the areas of analysis and design. Its development strategy is often based on a literature search and followed with development by imitation. Without analysis and design, development is based on situations elsewhere and is less likely to set hit the target well.


Teachers need to be Analyst-Designers (and more)

Being responsible for the final stages of a highly situational task teachers need to be highly skilled in order to analyse
Analyse the situation: opportunities, hopes, needs, barriers...
Design a course of action in response
    – Choose a focus …
Develop: make arrangements for learning
    – Establish purpose, rapport, engagement …


The great waste!!

Ironically, teachers often have these high order skills in these areas but work in contexts (policies, cultures, without appropriate tools) that place severe limitations on their capacity to apply their skills in analysis and design. 

Curriculum and programs are often documented and managed as if all the important analysis and design decisions had been finalised and the situational factors are largely insignificant. All this at great cost to all concerned.

This tends to reduce teachers to trainers rather than elevating them to be professionals (teachers) working with their 'clients' (learners)


Possible teacher roles
    – Working on the learner to achieve official ' outcomes'
    – Working with the learner: purposes, ways and means
    – Making the learning experience meaningful
    – Learning about content and self
    – Learning about learning
    – Transferring learning (making it real)


Working with learners
• Choose a focus
• Check on prior learning (and share it!!)
• Design a learning task (purpose & processes)
• Facilitate the tasks, people, resources…
• Check on learning:
    – Outputs: knowledge, skills, products…
    – How to learn
    – About me
• Transference of the learning to achieve outcomes


A sound approach for teachers
• Understand yourself as mediator
• Keep the official curriculum in mind
• Analyse, design and develop well
• Work with your students
• Establish yourself as leader of learning
• Mediate the learning experience
• Be an obvious learner too.


What to mediate?
• Thinking: focus, approach… more
• Learning: meaning, challenge… more
• Doing: tasks, processes…
• Relating: contributions, benefits, achievement, interdependence


The ideal teacher is …
• professional
• a mediator
• able to ADD
• working with his/her clients
• on their authentic learning experiences
• and above all, a  learner


Teacher as practitioner not operator !!
Putting it all together
• Requires judgement
• This makes teaching a profession
• And a  lifetime’s work
• So develop your thinking vocabulary:
  processes, outcomes, purposes,  tasks, outputs, resources…



Rodriguez & Bellanca, What Is It About Me You Can't Teach? 1997 ( Hawker Brownlow)
Skuy M. (ed.), Mediated Learning In and Out of the Classroom, 1997 (Hawker Brownlow)
Ben-Hur M. (ed.), On Feuerstein's Insturmental Enrichment 1997 (Hawker Brownlow)
Deming W.E., The New Economics for Industry, Government and Education, 1993 (MIT)
Langford and Cleary, Orchestrating Learning With Quality, 1995 (ASQC Quality Press)
Cognitive Research Program