"Bored! That is usually how I feel about workshops and professional development, I'm just warning you," is how one principal in New Jersey introduced herself to me last Friday when I was about to begin training on the Danielson Framework for Teaching. Wow, I guess I can let that go or I can take it as a challenge. By lunchtime, she had to come see me again. "Uh-oh" I thought. "You can ask anyone----ask these other principals", she started out, "I hate these things. But, you know what? You have us up and moving around doing stuff that really matters in our jobs, and you make it fun, so that you can't help but stay involved in it. See? I haven't even been checking my email this morning. This is good stuff, Shelly."
After she left for lunch, all I could think was "This is exactly the type of engagement our lessons for kids need to be." You see, if we as adult learners have a tough time staying engaged in a day's training sometimes, seek first to understand how many of our typically off-task learners must feel. The more engaging and worthwhile the activities and the learning outcomes, the better off we ALL are, regardless of our age or our "ADHD-ness".
Full engagement of learners is most certainly the main task of every educator. After all, I can have the best laid plans (of mice and men---go on, you knew you wanted to say it), but those plans are only as brilliant as the learning that comes from the implementation of those plans.
Just for today, educators, let's plan for true engagement