Observation, emulation, and listening are key elements of how information is received, processed, and integrated, and they are aided or tainted by the qualities of teaching or coaching delivery as noted in the following paragraphs.
The more possessed of skills a teacher/coach is, the more clarity of intention and delivery there will be in the process of teaching and, conversely, the less the students/clients will be allowed to practice those errors into their developing skill set.
So, the greater the quality of skills, the more the coach/teacher has to give away in the learning process –all to the benefit of the learner with less unlearning woven into the process.. Eh?
Also, consider that the more innate and practiced one’s skills are, the more alive one can be with their skills and information, making them and whatever they are conveying more interesting.
Look For These Qualities for Exceptional Learning Experiences
There are numerous quality skills that make learning clean, clear and crisp, and are, thus, the bottom line elements of interactive giving/receiving or teaching/learning processes.
The following list, while not all-inclusive, lists several such abilities:
1. Fielding spontaneous questions,
2. Using a Socratic Method of Q&A that guides students into deeper levels of understanding,
3. Initiating preemptive strategies that steer learners away from common beginner errors,
4. Informing from concrete, by baby steps, into abstraction, and
5. Repeating information delivery via the five (5) learning paths or senses, reinforcing the brain’s mapping of information being learned.
Quality Teachers/Coaches ‘Walk Their Talk’ and Love It
As a concrete example, when I show you how to throw a ball, (water ski, read with dramatic expression, emanate aliveness from your Presence, or whatever) my demonstration will be limited by the highest expression I’ve mastered. I can not possibly give you more, no matter how sincere my desire to do so.Is it possible for me to give you a dollar if all I have possession of is 30¢?
Likewise, a star player who coaches will, without previous coaching, still possess his exceptional skill set which others can emulate with little or no unlearning curve because the coach will not teach errors to unlearn later. This is a wonderful gift to give the learners, wouldn’t you agree?
Conversely, if my teaching skill set is not proficient, I am free to put on a “good show” to override my inner fears or to hide my deficiencies. While there may be instructive components when teaching in this manner, there will also be negative elements communicating to the subconscious minds of the students.
Their minds will be “picking up” and incorporating these negative signals into their learning, albeit the negativity will be unsuspectingly acquired. These elements will be present for the students to unlearn en route to their mastery since they were integral in their presenting process. To whatever degree my teaching emulation factor is tainted, so is the functional learning pallet to the students.
Honest Reflection Minimizes GIGO
All learning is predicated upon the quality of source information since it is integral to the quality of what is being learned, making cause/effect considerations foundational and sequential steps secondary; both are vital. This understanding has been popularized by the phrase, “garbage in, garbage out (GIGO).” While the point at which we insert garbage into the learning process has its impact, it is still secondary to the fact garbage was inserted.
In summary, for teaching/coaching to be the best it can truly be, professionals need to be willing to engage in a brutally honest refection within themselves of the pros and cons of the piece they bring to the learning table. Likewise, it is imprudent for professionals to entertain the crazy mixed-up idea that they can give what they don’t have; it defies common sense and sound logic. While it may sound like a noble idea, it is a codependent notion at best and not wisely entertained. Take care of yourself so you can take care of others.