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Accelerating and Manufacturing Experiences for School Leaders
February 25, 2020
What’s the most effective way to learn?  Learning by doing.  But how do you learn by doing when you can’t “do” until you learn?  Since we also believe that Experience is the Best Teacher™, our simulations essentially accelerate time and manufacture experience.

In David Geurin’s post entitled Knowing vs. Understanding vs. Applying, he establishes the power and importance of simulations and how integrating them into preparing and supporting administrators as well as teachers is fundamental.

Since we also believe that Experience is the Best Teacher™, our simulations essentially accelerate time and manufacture experience. We define simulation as an on-line, “choose your adventure” type branching narrative, where participants are challenged to make decisions in a realistic context about a complex problem of practice as it plays out over time. Participants exercise judgment as they engage in decision making and then build resilience as they deal with the consequences that result from their choices including fallout from the various stakeholders that are often involved in school issues.

A powerful way to deploy a simulated experience approach is to blend them with other instructional or planning elements that provide the Knowing described in the article and to use simulations to produce the applying. A group approach with a facilitator is a great way to experience a simulation, as it becomes a collaborative and engaging experience. When the team gets to a decision point in the Sim, they need to come to consensus on what path to choose.  A generative discussion ensues and results in an organic, collaborative conversation amongst the team. In this way, participants are sharing their different perspectives and experiences.  This offers the group another vehicle to understanding on their way to applying which happens when they must manage the consequences of their decisions as they play out in the simulation.