One of things I know about myself is that I like to finish something I start. To that end, I do not like to start something I cannot finish. Having suffered two significant injuries in the past year, it has been a long since I started my training again.
This mentality has some benefits in teaching: I can complete tasks, marking and feel myself compelled to help my students (and never just ‘give’ them an answer) regardless of my fatigue or mindset.
It has, also, some failings: I loathe to start projects that I cannot finish; I feel more comfortable now in the classroom and in an assembly hall or in a Parents Evening than in other environments; tweaking practice doesn’t always take place as much as ‘plan an entirely new practice from scratch’.
An inspiring colleague said some wisdom to me about eighteen months ago. She told me that anything of worth and endeavour requires imperfection. it requires mistakes, things not happening, and mediocre aspects. Greatness comes from a giving a best first-effort, and then tweaking afterwards. This does not mean that projects should be launched without planning, or that lastminute.com planning endears you to colleagues, parents or kids. Instead it means that reflection needs to be built into projects.
This might appear to be common sense to experienced project managers. But the nature of the school system builds reflect in at weekends and half-terms. Often at that time, projects may have run out of steam somewhat, or seem a far cry from their initial vision.
Instead, like with my students, I am determined to start with a best-effort and actually plan in my tweaks. To do this feasibly, and with ease, I am going to use the ever-useful Wunderlist.
By setting a reminder to email me (or text, or pop-up), I can tweak my ongoing projects, aiming to refresh their purpose and keep useful.
My latest project is one for teaching the skills to acquire vocabulary. I have listed a reminded in 4-5 weeks, so we will see how that goes…