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Likes and Dislikes of Instruction - Page 3

post #61 of 75
Thread Starter 
For me, I hate standing sideways on the hill being lectured too. I already know how to stand sideways. Ski lessons need to be about skiing and if the verbal communication goes beyond one or two minutes, it's too long. I have a senior group who actually likes to talk on the side of the trail, b/c they like to rest. I try to keep them moving as much as possible and my instructions are very simple, clear, and short. They also like that.

Training new instructors and watching them practice teach is interesting. I try to circumvent a lot of waisted verbal information in the practice sessions and train them to cut the chase. I also train them to be able to see when someone is overterrained (even in the beginner area) so maximum learning can occur and how to give tasks to the faster students that will allow them to progress in a mixed group situation.

Good instruction looks like it is so easy to do. In reality, it takes years of development and practice. Some have more of a gift for it than others.

We (instructors) usually only hear about the bad experiences, the "you are a wonderfull teacher, I loved the lesson" makes the time spent training and learning and devoloping teaching skills worth it.

RW
post #62 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by ant
Lunch?!!! You get Lunch?!!!!!
LOL we had an option....you could use the 15 minutes to pee or eat lunch.
post #63 of 75
that sounds about right, Uncle Louie. When teaching groups. If on privates, forget it.
post #64 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron White
With the first busy time of the ski season comming up quickly, I thought it might be usefull to take a look at the really good threads that members posted here.
Too right. I'm enjoying the mellow nature of the season and dreading Christmas. I'm enjoying the lessons I'm teaching (and the ones I bail on and go skiing!). This topic, to me, says that everyone is different. If you read through it, that is the only common thread. It highlights the different learning styles, and the problems you have when you have a group of people who will all judge the lesson on how it addressed their learning needs, regardless of whether there was 9 other people in the group who might have been different.

I had an excellent clinic today all arvo with one of the local PSIA types on staff, in which I was mildly hypothermic (I was gibbering incoherently) but didn't bail for fear of missing something. An excellently constructed learning progression which really didn't address my learning style but was brilliant anyway. It gave me hope that maybe, if a lesson is so well taught and the subject matter is so well understood, that even if it is taught in a way that doesn't chime with one's own learning style, it can be excellent in any case.
post #65 of 75
Have only ever had group lessons for one week, rest private, and I suspect most people's likes and dislikes will be a factor of their favoured learning style, but I'll give it a go (again in no particular order)

Likes:

1. Analytical approach
2. Imagery (beach ball, pedalling a bike, aeroplane)
3. Instructors who can pick up how you learn best and adapt their approach accordingly
4. 60% positive/praise approach ("Most of that is working well now, but let's just work on this aspect to improve it") - I'm encouragement-motivated
5. Instructors who are able to pick up where your comfort zone is and where your panic boundary is, and can get you to operate between the two
6. Instructors who make me feel they're involved and interested in me and not just a body to be taught mechanics i.e. they give a bit of themselves too
7. Instructors who are aware of everything that's going on on the mountain and can use it as part of their teaching (watching others from lifts, local weather conditions and patterns etc).

Dislikes:

1. Instructors who can't explain the mechanics of what they are doing
2. Instructors who rely on you to copy them rather than explaining - demos are fine as a support tool, but (for me) not as the primary method
3. Instructors who spend all their time telling me I'm doing things wrong - that discourages me totally, makes me wonder how I have the temerity to even stand on a pair of skis
4. Instructors who make no attempt to engage on a personal level, tell you nothing about themselves. Perfectly personable, polite and friendly, but just totally contained personally, concentrate entirely on the teaching process and not interested in getting to know you at all because it's only 2 hours or whatever and you are ultimately their job.
post #66 of 75
My pet peeve would have to be in clinics. I hate clinics in which the clinician is teaching with concepts always hell bent on teaching to the certification exams.

"You need to move diagaonally into the turn" WTF is that. We end up with a bunch of bankers and hip movers.

"We need to be steering both feet" WTF is that. We end up with a bunch of inside ski divergers.

"Get forward, bring the hips up over the feet" WTF is that. Time to stick out the ars.

"You need to have a stronger inside half" WTF is that. We end up with robots who can keep both skis parallel.

I can go on and on and on but I think you get the message. Fk the test! Work with me on movement patterns to replace the inefficient movement that I have. Make me aware of the difference. Teach me how to frikin ski! I will ask how it relates back to teaching others if I want to know.
post #67 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pierre
...Fk the test!...
With you on that (after I pass the test)!
post #68 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pierre
My pet peeve would have to be in clinics. I hate clinics in which the clinician is teaching with concepts always hell bent on teaching to the certification exams.
Pierre,

As someone who spent a lot of years hiring instructors and trying to teach them to teach and to ski and observing other clinics, I know exactly what you are talking about. They'll tell other instructors to ski more and talk less, but they lead by example and spend huge amounts of time standing arund and talking. It seems like they are trying to impress the other instructors with their technical knowledge or something. Sort of an "I'm so smart, I could talk about this all day" and they DO!

I've even seen it at the examiner level. Last year at the eastern Master's Academy, there were a couple of groups that we would pass 3 or 4 times (read; made 3-4 laps) while they moved all of about 100 yards. We even lapped a D-Teamer twice, and as we passed the second time, someone in our group yelled something like "Isn't it great to be skiing?". They got the hint, thankfully.

Another problem with people trying to teach other instructors with lines like "move diagonally into the turn", is that if this were a paying student, I would hope that they wouldn't teach that way. And if you don't teach a paying customer that way, why would you teach another instructor that way? I hope they know how to teach by using more than command/task using technical terms.
post #69 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnH
Another problem with people trying to teach other instructors with lines like "move diagonally into the turn", is that if this were a paying student, I would hope that they wouldn't teach that way. And if you don't teach a paying customer that way, why would you teach another instructor that way? I hope they know how to teach by using more than command/task using technical terms.
You got that right.

I forgot to add the clinicians who botch guided discovery with "Guess the thing or word that I am looking for" as you stand there like an idiot because there may be more than his acceptable answer. I am like, I ain't got all day to guess the fkin little piece of trivial jargon you have in your head.

At least with the number of posts that I have on Epicski I make most clinicians nervous in any clinic I join.
post #70 of 75
Thread Starter 
Pierre,

Quote:
I ain't got all day to guess the fkin little piece of trivial jargon you have in your head.
If you want a certin answer, ask a certin question. I love cut the chase and get on with it type of teaching, both as a clenitian and while taking a clinic.

eng ch,

Quote:
3. Instructors who spend all their time telling me I'm doing things wrong - that discourages me totally, makes me wonder how I have the temerity to even stand on a pair of skis
For criticism to be usefull, it needs to be based on the performance of a task, otherwise it's pointless.

RW
post #71 of 75
LIKES

Empathy: Since skiing does not come naturally to me, I do not need to take class with the best skier on the mountain. I enjoy working with instructors who have had some issues with fear or technique, and are capable of sharing insight as to how they conquered it.

Creative Imagery: I like instructors who appeal to the right side of my brain.

Inspires Confidence: I am very self critical, so I do best when working with someone who can prove that I am not as bad as I think I am!

DISLIKES

Lack of Empathy and Compassion: The "suck it up" approach does not work on me. Also, if I tell an instructor that skiing did not come naturally to me, I find it very insensitive if they proceed to tell me anecdotes about students who were naturally intuitive about skiing. This is so offensive that I've discontinued lessons with instructors who have done this.

Instructors who seem to be Bored or Frustrated with Teaching Me: This is related to empathy and compassion. When I come into a ski class, I often believe that I am the worst student an instructor has ever worked with. If someone reinforces this belief, it's curtains!

Talking away while I'm Freezing to Death!: There comes a time when you have to shut up and ski! A good time is when your student's faces are turning blue and their teeth are chattering!

Not giving me enough time to "Play" with a Move:
I won't get it on one or two turns. Give me some time to work on what you tell me before stopping to correct me.

Overly Flirtatious Instructors: The "ski stud" thing gets so old!:

Subtlely Flirtatious Instructors: Okay, this is a rather touchy subject. There are instructors who can take a woman as unattractive as a baboon, and with a bit of subtle, but seemingly genuine flirtation, can make her feel like a goddess on skis. At first, that seems like a good thing. However, the group dynamic that devlops has some negative repurcussions. Women will either pretend to be more fragile than they are, in order to get the instructor to act more protective, or they work beyond their abilities, because they want to be the best in class. In these situations, I have found that the student can do anything in class, but she cannot ski with the same finesse when the instructor is not around. It becomes a question of "who is she skiing for, herself or the instructor?" In all due fairness, I think many instructors don't realize that they do this.

Instructors with obvious Favorites: Focusing all of your attention on the pretty, 20 something in your class is childish and unprofessional.

Female Instructors who give the Feminist Rap: Nobody is a better instructor for women by virtue of being a woman. Quality instruction defies gender.
post #72 of 75

Likes and Dislikes

Lisa Marie, I enjoyed you comments. Empathy has always been a very important ingrediant of teaching skiing. Fear, apprehension are very prevalent in skiing and empathy "sincere understanding" works really well to overcome these fears etc., connecting with a student is both rewarding for the student and the teacher. Also is shows genuine interest and is very hard to fake.
post #73 of 75
Pierre, the mis-use of "guided discovery" is rampant and drives me up the wall! Playing "guess the exact word I dragged out of my arse" is utter crap and I zone out as soon as it starts up. How on earth can anyone think that is an acceptable way to attempt to teach anyone anything? It defies belief. Argh!
post #74 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron White
For criticism to be usefull, it needs to be based on the performance of a task, otherwise it's pointless.

RW
OK I was in a hurry and didn't explain properly. I didn't mean I can't take criticism - that's the whole point a lesson. And I'm a bit like Lisa Marie in that I'm critical of myself, bit of a perfectionist and tend to have a lower opinion of my skills than the instructors seem to.

I meant that I have once had an instructor who spent the whole two hours telling me I wasn't getting what she was trying to teach me and didn't put in a single positive comment in the lesson. Granted I may have been a bit resistant since what she was trying to get me to do seemed to be the opposite of what every other instructor had taught up to that point (although it may just have been a refinement), but she didn't explain why she wanted me to do what she was trying to get me to do and didn't relate it to my previous knowledge. But more to the point, she spent the whole two hours being negative, not a word of praise for anything I did. As a result I came away from that lesson feeling that not only had I not achieved anything, but I had in fact gone backwards and the whole experience was a waste of time and money.

IMO negative criticism should be tempered with positive criticism, some explanation of what you're doing right and don't need to change and how what you're doing wrong could impact on what you're doing right. Not only is it more encouraging, but only then can you actually get a balanced, rounded view of how you are skiing.
post #75 of 75
Thread Starter 
eng ch,

Quote:
I meant that I have once had an instructor who spent the whole two hours telling me I wasn't getting what she was trying to teach me and didn't put in a single positive comment in the lesson.
Sorry, I wasn't emplying that you can't take criticism. My point is that criticism is only usefull when tied to the performance of a perticular task. The fact that you may have been unsuccessful at performing the task after several attemps, means that the instructor should have modified the task in such a way that you could be successfull. I can't blame you or anyone else for feeling it was a waiste of time, b/c it was.

RW
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