"The first teacher-responses to the concepts and theory of Learning by Design are usually related to the difficulty of understanding the terms ‘I just can’t get my head around them’ teachers say. ‘They’re too complicated and because I don’t understand them I feel stupid’. Teachers ask ‘why do I need these terms, why can’t we just speak in plain language?’ So, is the language of Learning by Design too difficult to learn?
The second set of responses, hot on the heels of the first, are invariably related to time: ‘we don’t have enough time for this stuff’ or, ‘it will take too much time to plan like this’. Then someone else says ‘we don’t have the time to sit around for hours planning’.
Finally, the third set of responses relate to the Learning by Design framework – ‘we’ve already got a planning-curriculum framework’ or, ‘not another damn framework’, or ‘we already know what we’re doing, we’ve been teaching for years, why do we need this thing?’
So, beginning with the first issue, the difficulty of understanding the concepts and terms. Learning by Design is fundamentally about addressing the need for a shared professional language. A language which allows teachers to identify, name, discuss, analyse, reflect-on, explain and make explicit their choices and decisions about how they teach. Using the language of Learning by Design means having the words to describe how we teach and how learners learn. Such a language allows practices to be shared and discussed – it means that feedback can be explicit and effective practices can be transferred and translated from one person to another. Such a language can help us to understand why some teachers are more effective in engaging students and bringing about deep intellectual learning than others and how every teacher can learn to teach in such ways. Sharing a professional language also means establishing the conditions via which teachers literally belong in the profession of teaching.
Conceptualising by naming
Conceptualising with theory
Experiencing the known
Experiencing the new
Knowledge Producing Community
Learning by Design
New Learning & New Times
Repertoire of Practice