Tag Archives: The Talent Code

Strategic Teaming: 3 Big Ideas Learning Communities embrace

Bringing differences to the same essential-to-learn highlighted our 2015-16 community goals and how the lessons were designed and delivered from our Head of School and Division Heads.  Today, I facilitated the next lesson for our teams.

We reviewed the 3 Big Ideas and the 4 Key Questions that high functioning teams embrace.

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We want to grow in leadership and in teaming.  In The Talent Code, Daniel Coyle writes

The trick is to choose a goal just beyond your present abilities; to target the struggle. Thrashing blindly doesn’t help. Reaching does. (Coyle, 19 pag.)

How might we, as a team, reach to target the struggle, to work on the edge of our abilities?

What if we use the seven stages that collaborative teams traverse from  by Parry Graham and Bill Ferriter (@plugusin) as a way to target our struggle? How might we use formative assessment to self-assess where we are now to make an informed decision about our next reach as a team?

Below are a sampling of the results when teams were asked to reflect and respond to the question At what stage do we currently function (most of the time) during team meetings?

If we focus on learning, have a collaborative culture, and use results to guide our decisions, how will we now differentiate with and for these teams who are different points in their collaborative journey?


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

Graham, Parry, and William Ferriter. Building a Professional Learning Community at Work: A Guide to the First Year. Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree, 2010. Print.

Stepping-stones: deepen learning – The Talent Code VTR SPW

Small successes [are] not stopping points but stepping-stones. (Coyle, 188 pag.)

How might we listen on many levels? What if we change our focus to concentrate on the process of learning in addition to the products of learning?

“Great teachers focus on what the student is saying or doing,” he says, “and are able, by being so focused and by their deep knowledge of the subject matter, to see and recognize the inarticulate stumbling, fumbling effort of the student who’s reaching toward mastery, and then connect to them with a targeted message.” (Coyle, 177 pag.)

 

How might we deepen learning? What if flexibility, the ability to show what you know more than one way, is deemed essential?

Gallimore explains it this way: “A great teacher has the capacity to always take it deeper, to see the learning the student is capable of and to go there. It keeps going deeper and deeper because the teacher can think about the material in so many different ways, and because there’s an endless number of connections they can make.” (Coyle, 178 pag.)

What if we teach (and learn) that practice makes progress and celebrate growth over time?

“Do we have a better understanding? A better understanding?” Ms. Jackson said, summing up. “You don’t have a complete understanding of this, no way, we haven’t done it enough. But do we have a better understanding? YES!” (Coyle, 191 pag.)

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 9: The Teaching Circuit: A Blueprint

A coach’s true skill consists not in some universally applicable wisdom that he can communicate to all, but rather in the supple ability to locate the sweet spot on the edge of each individual student’s ability, and to send the right signals to help the student reach toward the right goal, over and over. (Coyle, 178 pag.)


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

It’s early…still growing – The Talent Code VTR SPW

Is it possible to look at two seedlings and tell which will grow taller? The only answer is It’s early and they’re both growing. (Coyle, 166 pag.)

How might we observe, listen, and question to learn? What if we offer alternate routes and pathways to “show what you know?”

As Bloom and his researchers realized, they are merely disguised as average because their crucial skill does not show up on conventional measures of teaching ability. (Coyle, 175 pag.)

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 8: The Talent Whisperers

How might we change our vision of learning (and success) to highlight growth over time? What if we offer actionable feedback loops to offer opportunities for early (and often) mid-course corrections?

How might we defer judgement to be patient during growing seasons?

What you see is (not always) what you’ve got.


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

Contagious learning: lighting fires, deep practice – The Talent Code VTR SPW

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.
—W. B. Yeats

How might we send the right signals? What if struggle is celebrated and encouraged until it just clicks?

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 7: How to Ignite a Hotbed

Then it clicks. The kids get it, and when it starts, the rest of them get it, too. It’s contagious. (Coyle, 156 pag.)

Contagious…it’s a good word. How might we empower learners to take charge of learning? Hear from Kiran Sethi:


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

Confidence building and feedback – The Talent Code VTR SPW

As we continue to learn and act to deepen learning, empower learners, and work on the edge of capability, how might we ignite effort and confidence?

What skill-building really is, is confidence-building. First they got to earn it, then they got it. (Coyle, 134 pag.)

What if we use actionable feedback to embrace struggle, seize opportunity to learn, and celebrate success?

Now we’ll look more deeply into how it can be triggered by the signals we use most: words. (Coyle, 132 pag.)

How might we improve our feedback and choose words carefully to send a spark?

And according to theories developed by Dr. Carol Dweck, Engblom’s verbal cues, however minimal, are just the kind to send the right signal. Dweck is a social psychologist at Stanford who has spent the past thirty years studying motivation. She’s carved an impressively varied path across the field, starting with animal motivation and shifting to more complex creatures, chiefly elementary and high school students. Some of her most eye-opening research involves the relationship between motivation and language. “Left to our own devices, we go along in a pretty stable mindset,” she said. “But when we get a clear cue, a message that sends a spark, then boing, we respond.” (Coyle, 135 pag.)

What if the target the actions taken on a pathway to success? How might we highlight effort to ignite deep practice and serious effort?

Praising effort works because it reflects biological reality. The truth is, skill circuits are not easy to build; deep practice requires serious effort and passionate work. The truth is, when you are starting out, you do not “play” tennis; you struggle and fight and pay attention and slowly get better. The truth is, we learn in staggering-baby steps. Effort-based language works because it speaks directly to the core of the learning experience, and when it comes to ignition, there’s nothing more powerful. (Coyle, 137 pag.)

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 6: The Curaçao Experiment

When we hear I can’t…, can we reframe it using yet? What if we insist on the use of yet any time we hear I can’t? 

I can’t yet _______.

I can’t ________, yet.

How might we spur more confidence, more I can… effort and learning?

You must have worked really hard.

Have you thought about trying this next?

I’m giving you this feedback because I believe in you.


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

Long-term-committment: identity, groups, belonging- The Talent Code VTR SPW

I wonder how perception of self is formed. Through experiences?Through feedback? Through stories we are told from generation to generation?

Progress was determined not by any measurable aptitude or trait, but by a tiny, powerful idea the child had before even starting lessons. The differences were staggering. With the same amount of practice, the long-term-commitment group outperformed the short-term-commitment group by 400 percent. (Coyle, 104 pag.)

What if we reframe struggle for learners? How might we use the power of YET to set up long-term-commitment?

Talent is spreading through this group in the same pattern that dandelions spread through suburban yards. One puff, given time, brings many flowers. (Coyle, 99 pag.)

How might we use learning progressions and pathways for success to highlight breakthrough successes? What if we celebrate and encourage massive blooms of talent?

The answer is, each has to do with identity and groups, and the links that form between them. Each signal is the motivational equivalent of a flashing red light: those people over there are doing something terrifically worthwhile. Each signal, in short, is about future belonging. Future belonging is a primal cue: a simple, direct signal that activates our built-in motivational triggers, funneling our energy and attention toward a goal. (Coyle, 108 pag.)

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 5: Primal Cues

Identity and groups…future belonging…activate built-in motivation triggers…funnel energy and attention…

How might we…?


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

Slow down; attend to precision – The Talent Code VTR SPW

How might we offer time as a variable? What if we practice on the edge of ability, setting goals just beyond our current reach? What if we S…L…O…W… D…O…W…N to attend to precision? Might we actually accomplish tougher tasks if we attend to the subtle, hidden elegance of learning?

Why does slowing down work so well? The myelin model offers two reasons. First, going slow allows you to attend more closely to errors, creating a higher degree of precision with each firing—and when it comes to growing myelin, precision is everything. As football coach Tom Martinez likes to say, “It’s not how fast you can do it. It’s how slow you can do it correctly.” Second, going slow helps the practicer to develop something even more important: a working perception of the skill’s internal blueprints—the shape and rhythm of the interlocking skill circuits. (Coyle, 85 pag.)

What if our culture called for encouraged productive struggle where every learned set goals, worked to reach them, reflected on any gaps between the target and the learning, and adjusted?

Deep practice is not simply about struggling; it’s about seeking out a particular struggle, which involves a cycle of distinct actions. (Coyle, 92 pag.)

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 4: The Three Rules of Deep Practice

If you haven’t already, check out The Power of High-Leverage Practice on Daniel Coyle’s blog. The videos of Odell Beckham are amazing.

How might we offer opportunities to practice differently, to struggle, reflect, and select a new strategy to try?

Go slow. Attend to precision. Get in the game. Don’t practice for a month. Add frequent feedback loops. Continue to reach.


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

Guilds: architecture of talent – The Talent Code VTR SPW

How might we transform our classrooms into learning guilds where members learn by doing, through experience, movement, trial-and-error, questioning, and experimentation?

They each took part in the greatest work of art anyone can construct: the architecture of their own talent. (Coyle, 66 pag.)

What if we embed feedback loops, routinely, to celebrate progress and to make frequent, minor course adjustments as we learn and grow?

They became great writers not in spite of the fact that they started out immature and imitative but because they were willing to spend vast amounts of time and energy being immature and imitative, building myelin in the confined, safe space of their little books. Their childhood writings were collaborative deep practice, where they developed storytelling muscles. (Coyle, 57 pag.)

What if time becomes one of the most important variables instead of a determinant of pace? How might we offer learners more laps, more experiences, more trials, more time for trial-error-correction cycles?

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 3: The Brontës, the Z-Boys, and the Renaissance

In short, apprentices spent thousands of hours solving problems, trying and failing and trying again, within the confines of a world built on the systematic production of excellence. (Coyle, 64 pag.)

How might we facilitate experiences that offer opportunities to construct great works of art?

They each took part in the greatest work of art anyone can construct: the architecture of their own talent. (Coyle, 66 pag.)


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

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.

Deep practice: struggle, mistakes, learning – The Talent Code VTR SPW

How might we deepen learning experiences? What if we see small mistakes and failures as opportunities to learn?

Deep practice is built on a paradox: struggling in certain targeted ways—operating at the edges of your ability, where you make mistakes—makes you smarter. Or to put it a slightly different way, experiences where you’re forced to slow down, make errors, and correct them—as you would if you were walking up an ice-covered hill, slipping and stumbling as you go—end up making you swift and graceful without your realizing it. (Coyle, 18 pag.)

What if, in school (and out), we become serious about learning from mistakes? How will we learn from a mistake if it is erased, hidden, or ignored? What if we learn and share and seek feedback?

The second reason deep practice is a strange concept is that it takes events that we normally strive to avoid—namely, mistakes—and turns them into skills. To understand how deep practice works, then, it’s first useful to consider the unexpected but crucial importance of errors to the learning process. (Coyle, 20 pag.)

How can we tell when deep practice happens and deep learning is in progress?

Making progress became a matter of small failures, a rhythmic pattern of botches, as well as something else: a shared facial expression. (Coyle, 13 pag)

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Summer Reading using VTR: Sentence-Phrase-Word:
The Talent Code
Chapter 1: The Sweet Spot

How do we find and get into “the zone” to learn deeply? How might we help every learner dwell in their sweet spot, learning at the edge of their capabilities?


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