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Is instruction ever WRONG? - Page 2

post #31 of 40

Instructors teaching wrong

Some great posts, thoughtful and illustrate a lot of experience, I hesitate to join in but here's a little idea.

Instructors oftentimes teach ABCDEF in that order and deviate very little from this pathway. This is usually wrong as all people/students are different.. While ABC will work for student #1 and may work very poorly for student #2-when in fact ACF may work for that student. I see instructors teach in a very rote fashion at times and are not flexible.

Clarification: I am not talking aboout all instructors just some and I am definitely not talking about preceeding posts and almost all these posts show creativeness and flexib ility. Having taught a lot (not necessarily skiing), and most of my teaching having to do with human behavior I have become very aware of the ABCDEF method of teaching and watching the human experienc e deviate from this normal as a reaction to different outside stimuli.
post #32 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete No. Idaho View Post
Some great posts, thoughtful and illustrate a lot of experience, I hesitate to join in but here's a little idea.

Instructors oftentimes teach ABCDEF in that order and deviate very little from this pathway. This is usually wrong as all people/students are different.. While ABC will work for student #1 and may work very poorly for student #2-when in fact ACF may work for that student. I see instructors teach in a very rote fashion at times and are not flexible.

Clarification: I am not talking aboout all instructors just some and I am definitely not talking about preceeding posts and almost all these posts show creativeness and flexib ility. Having taught a lot (not necessarily skiing), and most of my teaching having to do with human behavior I have become very aware of the ABCDEF method of teaching and watching the human experienc e deviate from this normal as a reaction to different outside stimuli.
I think you may well have summarized the "stepping stones" of PSIA. We have ABCDEF as stepping stones, and understand that not every student needs to step on each stone.
post #33 of 40
All instructors should keep an open mind, and continue to learn from what they teach each day.
With "stepping stones" from the PSIA model it is the instructor's job to find out what work the best for each student - teaching to the individual, even in a group lesson. The more experience an instructor has then the more "stepping stones" they should have to get the point across. When we first start teaching we have a very small knowledge base - we know the basics and how to teach them, and that's why new instructors usually end up teaching the never evers, not because they are the best people for the job! As we gain experience we tend to teach higher levels of students, and as still relatively new instructors we are often streached in our knowledge and find more advanced students very challenging. Therefore, we might not have very much to teach a more advanced student (yet), and might choose to teach something that is wrong for that student, through not knowing enough ourselves.
And then there are instructors who sometimes read their students completely wrong, and although they do have a broader base to start from, they do get it completely wrong. Although some may like to think so, instructor's are not gods, and humans do make mistakes!
post #34 of 40
Terrain choice is an area that can make instruction wrong and so is class handling. The terrain and task must match (not to overlook student ability and mindset). There are situations when less pitch is better. There are also circumstance that suggest more pitch is better. Don' forget how conditions change the playing field.
I was very lucky to spend several years working with Joel Munn @ Breckenridge. He upset many instructors (not me) by assigning the upper level Mountain lessons to the staff members who attended the morning clinic, which he conducted. He checked you out! The instructor had to have the ability to teach upper levels but if your were drinking coffee inside (no matter who you thought you were) you could be sure that the upper mountain would not be in your lesson plan that day. Aside from the complaints of lazy instructors this system was for the benefit of the guests. The most important reason for doing this was SAFETY. Attendance of the AM clinic guaranteed that you knew the conditions of the day: (and your "condition" was also a known) what was open, groomed, closed, wind packed etc. There was no reason to get surprised by the unexpected and find your group floundering, hurting themselves or getting Terrain F***ed in your lesson.
Instruction is WRONG when it is blatantly unsafe. Some examples are: teaching directly under the lift, leading your class into terrain that you are unsure of in any way, allowing drug use, breaking the responsibility code, loosing people out on the hill and many more. Bolter
post #35 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolter View Post
allowing drug use
Is that a problem where you teach? I'm glad to say I haven't encountered that (as far as I know).

Anyway, I think your old supervisor is right. I always say you should ski to line-up, not walk.
post #36 of 40

NIMBY, or so you wish

Quote:
Originally Posted by epic View Post
Is that a problem where you teach? I'm glad to say I haven't encountered that (as far as I know).

Anyway, I think your old supervisor is right. I always say you should ski to line-up, not walk.
Yes I believe drug use among instructors and guests will compound any problems and will create them as well. If you are not or never was a drug user, then you are at a distinct disadvantage to detect those who use. It is part of the game and the fun to hide. It's a challenge to function as if you were straight. Tee Hee! But when they are really "baked' they'll hide. From experience, Bolter
post #37 of 40
The bad instructors I have had were ones the taught and showed but did little or no one on one feedback. Even in larger lessons the instructor should be able to work with each student.

Others I have had that I did not enjoy were ones that taught things contrary to what most expect, such as one instructor that emphasized all day that poles were not necessary and even dangerous, well I like my poles. Of course this same guy taught a Zen Skiing, "Be one with the mountain, embrace the turn", that only goes so far. sometimes I want to own the turn, conquer the run, and tame the Mountain.

The better instructors taught some on the easy, then moved to more challenging terrain, then reviewed on easier. They not only taught basics but pushed the comfort zone, gave helpful feedback, and took me places I would not normally have gone. I like learning new areas to ski that are challenging and push my skiing also the areas that are mostly overlooked or avoided by those not familiar with the mountain.
post #38 of 40
The few bad lessons I have taken were bad because of attitude, as opposed to technique. If an instructor is unhappy with the class level assigned to them, it's not the student's fault. There's nothing worse than an instructor who shows obvious frustration at a student being unable to grasp a specific skill.
post #39 of 40
LM, it's called being unprofessional (I'm sure you know that from your work).

To me, it's one thing to grouse about classes to fellow instructors in the locker room, another thing altogether on the hill.

A true professional gives the same "things" to a never-ever 3 year old class that he (OK, or she) gives to a black slope adult private bump lesson.
post #40 of 40

My way or the highway

Different is wrong if it student does not understand what I am teaching because of the difference.

I can make up a whole bunch of terms that make sense only with my methods of teaching. I can reuse common terms in non-standard ways. I can rename the phases of the turn, put neutral elsewhere, or ignore it entirely, and otherwise mess up the entire theoretical foundation upon which my students are taught.

Then, when they go to a traditional ski school, they will be totally confused, even though what I taught was correct, solely because of the difference in description. Maybe because their focus is on different things even.

When new students come to me, regardless of their backgrounds, they will be totally confused until they adopt my jargon and my ways of thinking about skiing.

Once we're all on the same page, things will improve.
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