Sunday, October 13, 2013

Tough Teachers and Assolciation Meetings

Graphic by Luci Gutiérrez
Tough Teachers Get ResultsBy Joanne Lipman via Wall Street Journal

Ms. Lipman is co-author, with Melanie Kupchynsky, of "Strings Attached: One Tough Teacher and the Gift of Great Expectations," to be published by Hyperion on Oct. 1. She is a former deputy managing editor of The Wall Street Journal and former editor-in-chief of Condé Nast Portfolio.

Most associations – whether at conferences, webinars or blogs – include an educational component for members.

Recently, we’ve seen blogs and articles about changes needed in our educational programming ... the death of the lecture; Ted-type sessions; etc.

So, as I read this story in the Wall Street Journal, I was intrigued.

So, I’m sharing these excerpts and urge you to read the full story or purchase the book.

Here are the excerpts from Ms Lipman’s story:
  • I had a teacher once who called his students "idiots" when they screwed up. He was our orchestra conductor, a fierce Ukrainian immigrant named Jerry Kupchynsky, and when someone played out of tune, he would stop the entire group to yell, "Who eez deaf in first violins!?" He made us rehearse until our fingers almost bled. He corrected our wayward hands and arms by poking at us with a pencil.
  • I was stunned by the outpouring for the gruff old teacher we knew as Mr. K. But I was equally struck by the success of his former students. Some were musicians, but most had distinguished themselves in other fields, like law, academia and medicine. Research tells us that there is a positive correlation between music education and academic achievement. But that alone didn't explain the belated surge of gratitude for a teacher who basically tortured us through adolescence.
  • An entire industry of books and consultants has grown up that capitalizes on our collective fear that American education is inadequate and asks what American educators are doing wrong.
  • Comparing Mr. K's methods with the latest findings in fields from music to math to medicine leads to a single, startling conclusion: It's time to revive old-fashioned education. Not just traditional but old-fashioned in the sense that so many of us knew as kids, with strict discipline and unyielding demands. Because here's the thing: It works.
  • The following eight principles—a manifesto if you will, a battle cry inspired by my old teacher and buttressed by new research—explain why.
  1. A little pain is good for you.
  2. Drill, baby, drill.
  3. Failure is an option.
  4. Strict is better than nice.
  5. Creativity can be learned.
  6. Grit trumps talent.
  7. Praise makes you weak…
  8. while stress makes you strong.
So, what does this mean for association management and association meetings?

We’ve seen and shared a number articles about studies showing that the lecture format for meetings no longer works.

If Ms. Lipman’s assumptions are valid, what do they mean for association meetings? 

Is the lecture format dead, dying or alive?

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