We can all remember being in a class where there was the typical disruptive student. The one who made the jokes, the noises … generally the pain the … But when it comes to teaching adult students, disruption and disruptive behavior takes on a different and more subtle form. More often than not the disruption is not even malicious but can still have some negative consequences.
Students who know nothing are sometimes the best ones. Untarnished, uncorrupted … enthusiastic students who know very little about a subject are like gold. But this is not always the case.
It doesn’t matter who you are. If you’ve ever been in any class that has been of any remote importance or value to you, you’ve taken notes. But are they really worth it?
More often than not when you’re in a presentation of any sort there are going to be times where you’re going to want to take notes. Why? Well the answer is pretty simple. Notes are our way of taking the most important slivers of information that we’re given and ‘recording’ a summary of that importance for later, so that we can focus more on what is happening now, refer back to the recorded details later and finally give ourselves the chance to learn things later.
It’s a question that tends to get raised at all the wrong times, and not something that really gets thought about all that often, normally not until there is a problem. But when it comes to something as important as instructing within education and training of any person, whether it be school students or mature adult students, the ideal is where any student is taught by a ‘good teacher.’ But what exactly makes a good teacher?
Right or wrong this is a question that has many subjective answers. And this is a good thing. If the quality of an instructor was purely measured in hard objective indicators then there would be a convergence of instructional skills and techniques and the art (and skill) of teaching would take on a very linear, predictable pattern.
It not usually something that you think about when you’re preparing lessons but an important factor regarding training outcomes, is How long should a lesson be? The other perspective is how long can a lesson take to deliver properly?
I said previously that training is expensive, and more often than not you may not have the time you need to do a subject justice. The chances are there will be external factors that dictate how much freedom, time and space you’re going to have when it comes to delivering training. When those external factors become too restrictive, as an instructor it’s our job to push back and demand more resources to get the job done right . . . otherwise you may as well not do it at all.
I just read recently that if you spend long enough following someone on social media you’ll learn who they truly are—they’re political alignment, they’re sense of humor, they’re beliefs etc. To an extent I find this to be true, especially when someone’s back is up to the wall, you’ll see their true nature. You’ll see what they will do to survive, and who they’ll sacrifice along the way or . . . you will see something extraordinary.
You also get to learn about people as they observe things. There are those who will watch the world go by and criticize everything around them without knowing anything about what they’re talking about, and then there are those who will blindly say that everyone is simply trying their best no matter what the outcome or effort is—and they are only two ends of the spectrum.