I took the above shot while walking along the Connecticut River one foggy late winter afternoon. Walks along the river in weather like that engulf you in an environment and soundscape that encourages your mind to wander and ponder.
The Heart of the Matter
Review and Reflection are used to create a feedback loops in Agile project management and Design-Thinking. These are powerful tools and provide constant guidance during iterative developmental processes.
- Review is the process of examining the output of the process being used. It examines a small piece of the project has been built.
- Reflection is used to examine the process the team used to during that creation small piece of the project.
So we examine both output and process. The results are used to quickly change the process used or re-engineer the output of the process. We can use the same methodologies to improve our teaching during and after the workshop or class.
Review is very important to our process and ideally happens in real time to allow for adjustments to the portion of the workshop being presented. Prior to any rest breaks instructors should introduce a quick retrospective exercises like the Plus- Delta we outlined in an earlier section of this website. Even a simple is everyone doing okay? May suffice to gather useful feedback. It is important to let your students know that your actively thinking about your presentation methods and the environment. Asking “Is it hot hot in here? ” or ” Maybe we should go outside ? ” are great questions. Do not stop at simply trying to evaluate the learning progress or effectiveness of your presentation.
Hands on group exercises with verbal reporting are good ways to gain insight into student learning success. By doing this you are able to identify what is actually working and make minor adjustments as needed, while the class is in session.
At the end of every workshop or class we will gather information using retrospective exercises like Plus-Delta or one on the many exercises that can be found here:
We then reflect.
- Could we have changed the way we presented the information to the class?
- Were we clear about our learning objectives and goals?
- Could our students demonstrate that they had achieved those objectives?
- What should we change as result of student feedback?
- How can we gather sponsor feedback?
There are many questions. We as instructors have an opportunity to gather valuable feedback that we can use to improve our teaching.
Similarly we can also ask our students to review and reflect upon the work they have done. Instructors should provide guiding prompts in the form of questions to help the students develop this retrospective view. For example and instructor may restate the learning objectives for the lesson and ask students to reflect on their progress or lack of progress towards those goals.
What does this graphically look like?
In Agile it looks like this:
What Does It Look Like in a Workshop?
It may look like this:
The above photo was taken at the end of a customer journey workshop. The class was applying the knowledge they had gained about how to map a customer journey against a real world problem. In this case the team was doing initial design work for a library learning commons and they needed to understand the existing environment, customer experience, and pain points. Its is a graphical review of the experience.
This exercise is called Glad- Sad and can be used to map pain points or used as a tool to review the experience your students are having during or at the end of your workshop. It is used exactly like the Plus -Delta exercise we introduced in the early section of this website.
Data gathered from these exercises is very valuable to both the instructor and the student. It makes the student think about what just happened and what they thought went well and what did not. For the instructor it provides insight into the student experience and is used during a reflection process, to improve the next class or workshop.
Time to Jump into the Water
I took this picture of a surfer on Cronkite beach at the mouth of San Francisco bay with a tiny cell phone camera. The sun was in my eyes and I basically pointed and shot. I was amazed that the result.
Sometimes you just have to jump in and see what happens. Just take that picture!
We have spent some time reviewing foundational knowledge, that you as an instructor, can use to create your workshops or classes.
Will you find better ways do doing things and new learning theories to explore ?
I hope so. This information is just to get you started and provide a good foundation.
Now it is time to jump right in and create or Apply the knowledge you have gained.
We are always available to help and you can find us at PivotWerks.com
Please leave comments and feedback. I am interested in your Plus-Delta comments.