I am still returning mentally after an intense IDW workshop in Big Bay, MI. It was led by Sam Crowley who was kind enough to allow me on staff as an IT candidate. Jeremy Vore, a talented Level 4 ACA certified instructor was also a huge part of the event.
My first take away was the sense of organization and the thought put into the sequence of topics and events. Sam made me aware (I finally got it) about the difference between the staff presenting (to model teaching, not so much to teach the skill) and the candidates presenting (practicing what staff was modeling). Still with me? Time was precious and Sam showed me ways to keep things moving and getting from A to B with the minimum gnashing of teeth.
I was assigned classroom topics and spent a good deal of time writing lesson plans, gathering info and props and practicing. My chart presentation, intro to the ACA , talks on crossings and rules of the road all could have been better; but I felt that I got to the bones and passed on what the IC's needed. I intend to continue to improve on all of that.
On the water Sam taught me when he didn't know he was teaching me (yeah, I know, he always knows). All I had to do was watch him model ways to engage a group, keep them moving and to remain STUDENT FOCUSED (heard you, Sam). Every time I gathered a nugget I made every effort to incorporate it into my very next lead role.
The students ranged from their early 20's to a young guy who was in his 50's. By the end of the workshop, as they did team presentations, I saw a bonding of colleagues with common goals supporting one another. As we did a final one on one, I (and I suspect Sam and Jeremy) were impressed by the insights of the IC's feedback. Most of them got it, knew what their future work needed to be and were positive around all we told them. That is a successful workshop (Kudos to Sam).
I cannot end this without a word about Jeremy who, although many years my junior, has much more butt in the boat time than do I. He is an accomplished paddler (was once a BCU Coach) and an effective (if sometimes poly-verbal) instructor. Far more importantly, in my judgment, he is a fine person with a remarkable sense of who he is, insight into what others need and integrity beyond what I see in most people these days. He is the future.
So, now it is time to organize all the notes and thoughts that returned with me so I don't repeat my old mistakes. Oh yes, I must get to a book store and buy something for Sam. Anyone know of a book titled, "Jokes Guaranteed Not To Make Intelligent People Groan"?