Persistance to Mastery (Using Skateboarding as an Analogy for Learning)

I attended an incredible event at TEDxEastsidePrep today. The topic was: Evolution of Instruction: Inquiry, Innovation, Identity and it exceeded my expectations.  I tweeted a couple of nuggets I got from each presenter and I wonder if that will encourage teachers to take a risk with twitter as a learning tool.

There’s an overwhelming amount of great things to share, and perhaps I’ll write about all of it.  One speaker, Dr. Tae was off the charts. A physics professor and avid skateboarder, he talked about what has been a common theme at our school: Learning by making mistakes. He walked through a trick he wanted to learn by showing us a shortened video of his progression. He got it on his 58th try. That meant he FAILED 57 times. There was no physical incentive for this trick other than the accomplishment of the act itself. There were no letter grades (an F for his first attempt, maybe a C+ near the middle). He only had a clear goal, persistance, practice and hard work. How are our children learning? Are their learning tasks as relavent, engaging, and clear to them? Do they persist or do they give up easily? All extremely good questions to ask oneself and their students.

Here’s a video on Dr. Tae’s blog that gives you an idea of what he means when he says we need to build a new culture of teaching and learning. The end of the school year is upon us and it’s a fairly busy time, but I hope to share one nugget from all the speakers.


2 thoughts on “Persistance to Mastery (Using Skateboarding as an Analogy for Learning)

  1. Pingback: Persistance to Mastery (Using Skateboarding as an Analogy for Learning) | Γονείς σε Δράση

  2. Great video by Dr. Tae. The million dollar question for parents is how do you balance supporting and encouraging kids to actually spend the time to pursue their passions and independent learning with the current reality that they need to do the large volume of rote work and get good at “playing the game” of the traditional expectations to get that A? The As may be meaningless, as Dr. Tae argues, but they still are prerequisites for advancing up the next step of our education system. Those of us who can choose private schools with small classes and the correct philosophy are helped in this, but many of those schools require high admissions test scores, still dump a ton of work on the kids and require either substantial financial resources or substantial financial sacrifice. The hope, however, lies in individual teachers. All it takes is one during the education of a child to spark a life-changing passion.

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