Struggle: pay attention; keep moving forward – The Talent Code VTR SPW

What if we reframe mistakes to be billed as opportunities to learn? If we truly believe in fail up, fail forward, fail faster, how do we leverage the quick bursts of failure mistakes struggle to propel learning in a new direction?

Struggle is not optional—it’s neurologically required: in order to get your skill circuit to fire optimally, you must by definition fire the circuit suboptimally; you must make mistakes and pay attention to those mistakes; you must slowly teach your circuit. You must also keep firing that circuit—i.e., practicing—in order to keep myelin functioning properly. After all, myelin is living tissue. (Coyle, 43 pag.)

How might we position each learner to work at the edge of their ability, reaching to a new goal,  capture failure and turn it into skill?

Because the best way to build a good circuit is to fire it, attend to mistakes, then fire it again, over and over. Struggle is not an option: it’s a biological requirement. (Coyle, 34 pag.)

How might we establish a community norm that calls for a trail of mistakes to show struggle and evidence of learning? What if paying attention to mistakes is an essential to learn? How might we celebrate the trail that leads to success, to keep moving forward?

TalentCode-Chpt2

Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 2: The Deep Practice Cell

How might we target struggle so that it is productive? For what should we reach? What if expand our master coach toolkit to include a pathway to sense making and perseverance?

SMP-1: Make Sense of Problems and Persevere #LL2LU

What if we target productive struggle through process? How might we lead learners to level up by helping them reach? When learners are thrashing around blindly, how might we serve as refuge for support, encouragement, and a push in a new direction?


Coyle, Daniel (2009-04-16). The Talent Code: Greatness Isn’t Born. It’s Grown. Here’s How. Random House, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

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