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Teaching takes time

This week we had 5 90 minute lessons taught to us by our peers. Everybody was put into a group of 4, and we each had to teach one of the lessons as a group, and take part in the other four lessons as learners.

One thing that shone out so clearly from the sessions:

Teaching takes time.

From this, I don’t mean it is a skill you develop over time, as true as that is. But rather it always takes longer to teach something than you think it will. As a group, this was the first time we’ve been asked to teach an entire lesson from start to finish, and it was clear from all the lessons that everything was overrunning. For everyone.

Thankfully, our group dividing our 90 minutes into three half hour blocks, and planned them separately. Each of our 30 minutes contained the core stuff at the start and useful, but less essential stuff at the ends. We were therefore able to be more dynamic with our lesson and cut bits out from the end of one block if it was over-running without leaving the rest of the lesson up the proverbial creek. Although we had allowed for this eventuality, I don’t think any of us expected it to be as necessary.

So the lesson from the lesson: teaching takes time, build flexibility into your plan.

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