Clinical Practice…how do we set ourselves up for success?

Good day JeffCo 11,

During this week’s class we discussed the articles that referenced the 10,000 hours it takes to be a master of ones craft (or not). One thing that came to mind as I was reading the articles was this…what if those 10,000 hours were spent developing the wrong habits? Coming from a baseball background, I kept thinking about a player in the batting cage doing 10,000 swings. Maybe those first 500-1000 swings are just getting used to the weight of the bat and learning some basic mechanics of hitting. These swings may be very cookie cutter and robotic and not have a lot personalized traits to them. As the player starts to develop their own swing (leadership style/calling), they may put in 1000, 2000, 5000 swings in a manner that feels right and comfortable to them only to find out that their swing can’t hit a curve ball (a likely scenario/hardship they will have to mediate has escaped their scrutiny until now). Now how many more swings do they have to make to not only unlearn their previous swing and remove all the bad habits, but to also now develop a new swing that can fix what they were missing previously?

As we start our clinical practice journey I have the following questions:

How can we best design our clinical practice hours to ready us for as many scenarios/situations as possible?

Is there a way we can minimize having to go back and “relearn” or is it an inevitable part of our leadership journey that we have to find our way by making mistakes so that we can learn from those mistakes?

How do we effectively work with our mentors to set up a relationship where it is okay to fail in a low-stakes situation before we have to do it on our own as an administrator?

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2 thoughts on “Clinical Practice…how do we set ourselves up for success?

  1. Ericsson also maintained a strong focus on deliberate practice, to which I would add reflective practice. Deliberate and Reflective practice might help mitigate some of these potentially wrong habits from being reinforced.

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  2. 1) I had thought about how I would best design our clinical practice hours is by observing, listening and communicating with school staff to see if there’s an area or two or three 😉 that could use some improvements. Right now, I’m just on the sidelines, just watching. Ideas are starting to come up.

    2) Mistakes are a huge part of life–I really think it’s okay as long as you reflect on it–I tend to think about where the mistake happened, how it could have been prevented and “try again.” I worry about those who beat themselves up over mistakes–I guess that’s part of my job as a learning specialist–I’m constantly telling the students I work with to try again–take chances–and reflect. They’ve (most) have learned to take risks–my goodness, without risks, what would become of us?

    3) I’m really, really, really lucky to have two administrators who are very low key, trusting and forgiving. They too, are supportive of mistakes. They’res also the kind of administrators who’d let me call them for support for many years after.

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