ZML Didaktik / Innovative Learning Scenarios

Make reflection-in-action visible

Posted on: August 8, 2018

The first half of 2018 was influenced by my lecture of Schön’s Reflective Practitioner. I read two of his books (see below), wrote two blogposts (see below) and gave a workshop, where we discussed the meaning of refection in action in detail.

Impression of the workshop (10.7.2018)

I realised that Schön describes perfectly how I work because I’m a reflective practitioner. It was more difficult for me to to understand the “reflection-in-action” process in detail.

Reflection-in-action with regard to a workshop preparation

Therefore, I reflected my preparation of the workshop. As I’m an experienced developer of workshops I was convinced that I will succeed to create an interesting workshop. While finalising the slides (two days before the workshop) I got an idea how to design the theoretical part of the workshop.  Checking my toolbox of workshops methods I decided to let the participants discuss 10 slides in pairs. After the pair work they brought their understanding into the group. So this was the easy part.

But: how to design the practical part of the workshop? I wanted the participants to translate the complex concept of reflection-in-action into their context. I expected myself to create a great master template for this process of transfer. During the last month before the workshop I waited that this master template emerges. But it didn’t.

After successfully designing the first part of the workshop I was happy. And this emotion helped me to deal with my high expectations of myself. I threw the idea of the master template in the bin. I remembered the power of emergent learning and rediscovered my confidence into the participants. So instead of working on a master template I formulated a question. I asked them:

And … what does this mean for my teaching?

  • Where do I find reflection-in-action?
  • Where experiments?
  • Where Telling & Listening or Demonstrating & Imitating?

The workshop went really well, I learned a lot and got a first idea about how to us reflection-in-action with my content strategy master students. This will be my task for them.

Reflect how you work on a portfolio post

Based on the material of Schön – which I will provide for you – I ask you to reflect-in-action during the writing of one of your posts. It would be ideal if you could jot down your thoughts during the process of writing. Maybe some questions can help you to reflect-in-action:

  • What do you think when you write the first words?
  • What are the first words? (title, footnotes, …?)
  • Do you have the whole picture of the post already in your head when you start?
  • How does the post evolve?
  • What is easy for you? What difficult? What needs a lot of time?
  • How is your mood? Are you confident that your post will be good enough? When do you feel insecure?
  • What do you hate when writing a blog post? When does this hate emerge?
  • ……???
  • ……???

I’m really very curios of the reflection-in-action of my students. And of course while writing this post I reflected my doing – and I got new insights how this post evolved, changed it’s title, got much longer than planned.

Literature and Links

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