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The Dialogic Learning Weekly #165

Hi there and welcome to another Friday. I don't know about you but this week has felt like a month. I
The Dialogic Learning Weekly
The Dialogic Learning Weekly #165
By Tom Barrett • Issue #165 • View online
Hi there and welcome to another Friday. I don’t know about you but this week has felt like a month. I hope you are well and you are staying safe, wherever you are.
Let’s get into this week’s issue, summarised in the following hashtags:
#postcorona #collectivevulnerability #craftofteaching

The Post Corona World
Matthias Horx conducts a thought experiment we could all adopt. He puts himself into the future and imagines looking back on the virus days we are experiencing.
We call it the RE-gnosis. In contrast to the PRO-gnosis, we do not look „into the future“ with this technique. But from the future BACK to today.
If you have been around the newsletter for a while you will know I have often referred to the Pre-Mortem strategic thinking routine. Horx is exploring the same type of prospective hindsight.
Here is some of his future mind from Autumn 2020:
  • We will be surprised that drugs were developed in the summer that increased the survival rate. This lowered the death rate and made Corona a virus that we have to deal with — much like the flu and many other diseases.
  • The big technology hype is over. We are again turning our attention to the humane questions: What is mankind? What do we mean to each other?
  • We are astonished to see how much humour and humanity actually emerged in the days of the virus.
  • We will be amazed at how far the economy could shrink collapsing, something which was predicted during every pre-corona tax increase and every government intervention.
  • We will be surprised that even the loss of assets due to the stock market crash does not hurt as much as it felt in the beginning. 
This is a powerful strategic thinking model to add to your cognitive toolkit. In many ways it is a simple thought experiment, and yet it is such a useful tool for planning and strategy in days like we are experiencing.
Matthias Horx explains:
If you do it right, something like future intelligence is created. We are able to anticipate not only the external “events“, but also the internal adaptations with which we react to a changed world.
That feels very different from a forecast that always has something dead, sterile in its anticipatory character. We leave the stiffness of fear and return to the vitality that belongs to every true future.
If you are interested in me sending you a Pre-Mortem PDF resource that you can run with your teams, drop me a note.
48 – The Post Corona World – Matthias Horx
Boredom is Sacred
In this blog post Brené Brown explains some of the key insights she has developed from over 20 years of teaching and learning online.
She also is very real about the expectations she has for the type of learning we are all beginning to experience. I wonder if we need to check our expectations a little.
The bad news: It will be a total FFT (effing first time) for you, your team, your school, and your district. The wheels will fall off. It will NOT go as planned. And, for those of you asking students to get dressed and sit in front of the computer for 8-10 hours, as if they’re in class … I hate to have to tell you – that is NEVER going to happen. Neurologically – it’s screen time. Have you ever been in the same room with someone who has played Minecraft for 4 or 5 or 6 hours? Non-human.
Some of her summarised insights and key ideas include the following:
  1. Use the first few days to build a container. NO content teaching. Just set up the ground rules together in a way that lets students experience some of the functionality of the classroom.
  2. Do not assume every student has the same attention span, the same level of wi-fi, access to private space, and the same number of supportive people in their homes.
  3. Small chunks. No more than 30 minutes online. You can meet up several times a day, but the best teachers in the world can’t hold attention longer than that. 
Collective Vulnerability, the FFTs of Online Learning, and the Sacredness of Bored Kids
What will happen to the craft of teaching?
You may have seen me increasing my activity on Twitter recently - I have always enjoyed connecting in that space and it has proven as powerful as ever in these times.
You can connect with me on Twitter here >> @tombarrett
Here are some of the thoughtful provocations from people within my network this week.
I particularly appreciated the message about mental health. Also the importance of crafting a learning experience, highlighted by Paul Taylor.
Dr Katherine Hoekman
“This isn’t ‘normal’ school & isn’t going to mirror ‘teaching as usual’. Ss will struggle w tech &motivat’n..Keep it simple..Not every lesson needs to be video,live,tech-based.. #Trust prof judge’t..Be kind to yourself & others.This is #distancelearning during a global pandemic”.
#day3 With all the talk of ensuring of ‘continuity of learning’, ‘online schooling’ & ‘distance learning’ let us not lose sight of the social, emotional, health & wellbeing needs of our learners, families & teams - the ramifications of which could far outweigh lost learning 1/2
Paul Taylor
I think it is very important that schools don’t lose sight of carefully crafted learning. This takes time. We don’t need to rush to ‘go online.’ This is complex and instead of thinking there is a learning emergency we should focus on people as we face a health emergency.
Which of the ideas shared this week resonated with you the most?
This weekly newsletter is me reaching out to you. We need more connections and understanding in these times. All you have to do is hit reply and drop me a note. If there is something I can help with, just say.
In dialogue we trust.
~ Tom Barrett

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Tom Barrett

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