Monday, June 27, 2011
Continuous improvement is easy
Edclick provides web-based applications for continuous improvement in education
Everybody would like to improve education. No one more than the educators themselves. But there are right ways to go about it and wrong ways.
One of the wrong ways is to threaten to fire teachers and close schools if standardized test results are not high enough. Threats and fear inhibits creative thinking and problem-solving rather than stimulates it.
Improvement requires change. Change requires trying new things, taking chances and, inevitably, making some mistakes. If one is in fear of losing his job or having her school closed, there will be fewer experiments done, fewer chances taken and little effective improvement.
But just because the approach to improvement based on fear is misguided doesn't mean that we may be excused from improving. We need a better approach.
Small changes are easier to make than big ones. They are less scary. If they turn out to be mistakes, there is less harm done. Many small changes aggregate into big change...big change made without fear and with a minimum of risk.
In order for small improvements to aggregate into large-scale improvement, everyone must be ever vigilant for opportunities for improvement. We must all ask ourselves throughout each day...
For that task I just completed or for that lesson I just taught, what small change could I make that would have made it 5% more efficient or more effective?
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