November 13, 2010

Do I Have Your Attention? II

This is one of my favourite moments in the film, The Social Network, that has been remixed as a beautifully produced Kinetic Typography project, in Adobe After Effects, set against the dialogue from the film.

While we're thinking about attention, how often do schools and teachers assume the attention of youngsters, of parents, of our colleagues? My gut feel: nearly all the time.

  • We assume that learners want to learn because they chose subjects.
  • We assume that learners will want to learn because we like the way we do something.
  • We assume parents care about their child's education.
  • We assume that our colleagues want to learn how to do their jobs better/differently.
  • We assume that adults know how to learn on their own.
  • We assume that chuldren don't know how to learn on their own.
  • ...

We need to work consistently at gaining attention, retaining attention and turning that attention into value, much in the same way as a tech startup like Facebook would do (check out Dave McClure's busy but genius presentation on attention and metrics if you want to delve more into how). I'm fairly convinced that somewhere in these tech startup metrics are the assessment tools for the new forms of learning that are emerging, but fighting against assessment structures of old that don't fit anymore.

And in using new metrics to measure success, we can engage in new learning with more confidence, new learning that is almost certainly more likely to get the attention of those around us.

I'm grateful for a constructive formative feedback that took place on this blog and led to the incredibly talented Angel, who made it, changing some minor errors to bring even more impact back to its message.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

I DO find myself thinking about this, after reading your blog. But it brings some questions too:
Because you say "We need to work consistently at gaining attention, retaining attention and turning that attention into value".
When I think of the scope of a life-long-learner we want 'returning visits', meaning after starting and succesfully ending a training or course, coming back for another one.
But when I think of the scope of daily-educational-operations, like the ones you mention in your bulletlist, I really have no idea how to measure attention, let alone value....
hmmm, I have to mentally ruminate this a bit...
Thanks for you blog!

The comments to this entry are closed.

About Ewan

Ewan McIntosh is the founder of NoTosh, the no-nonsense company that makes accessible the creative process required to innovate: to find meaningful problems and solve them.

Ewan wrote How To Come Up With Great Ideas and Actually Make Them Happen, a manual that does what is says for education leaders, innovators and people who want to be both.

What does Ewan do?

Module Masterclass

School leaders and innovators struggle to make the most of educators' and students' potential. My team at NoTosh cut the time and cost of making significant change in physical spaces, digital and curricular innovation programmes. We work long term to help make that change last, even as educators come and go.

Recent Posts