Years ago, long before I began working in professional development for credit union leaders, I was a middle school language arts teacher. The school district in which I taught was struggling with the “summertime slip,” that inevitable backward step that many students make when they are out school for the two or three months of summer break.My district’s solution was to shift to a year-round schedule in which the long summer break is replaced by a series of three shorter breaks throughout the year. The results were less than stellar. Instead of helping students remain motivated to learn through their breaks, we assumed that three shorter sessions of academic inactivity would lead to better results. It didn’t. We traded a single case of “summer slip” for three periods of academic atrophy.The three shorter breaks model didn’t account for the challenges of self-directed and distance learning that are very much a part of any break from school. Learning is inherently social. That’s why we like to share ideas with others in the classroom, discuss our favorite books and teach others how to pursue the hobbies we love. When we divorce learners from each other and teachers, motivation goes down the drain. We even see the effect with adult learners in online programs led by some of the top educational institutions in the world, like Harvard and MIT. The EdX courses of those top universities—which are one-way, non-interactive offerings—had only a 3.13% completion rate by all participants in 2017-2018.A parallel challenge to learning is now taking place in the credit union industry.“Social distancing”—or not being in close physical proximity to anyone other than those you live with—is currently being practiced in many areas to help delay the spread of coronavirus. This means that many organizations are wisely postponing traditional in-person learning events until it’s safer to travel and be in a classroom. But now, perhaps more than any time since the Great Recession, targeted professional development is essential to respond to the rapidly shifting business environment. That means your staff and board will be required to continue their professional development on their own.Fortunately, there are things we can do to stay engaged as we learn virtually during shelter-in-place.Switch things up. When we are learning on our own, we can take a lesson from the way teachers structure their school days. On any given day, students experience a range of activities—reading and writing workshops, science and math labs, model building, and small and large group discussion. The variety hamstrings boredom and keeps the students engaged and learning. Apply these principles in your own self-directed learning. Combine short articles and longer pieces of literature, videos and podcasts, case studies, and structured online learning on the topics you need to know.Share and ask questions of others. Often, the biggest detriment to self-directed and online learning is the lack of interaction with other learners and instructors. This is exacerbated by current social distancing requirements. Humans learn best when we share ideas, ask questions and brainstorm together, but it requires some creative problem-solving when our teams and learning partners are all working from home. Not surprisingly, my team at CUES uses Zoom calls for more structured discussions and problem-solving, but we are relying more on Microsoft Teams to ask quick questions and share ideas and resources. It’s common to receive a chat message during the day that says something like, “Hey, I just read this article about having an entrepreneurial mindset. How can we apply the principles to our team?” Find what works for you, whether it’s Microsoft Teams, an online forum, email or text. Maybe you just want to pick up the phone. Just share your learning.Seek opportunities to interact with subject matter experts. A key benefit of learning in the classroom is the opportunity to ask questions and interact with the teacher. When we engage in self-study, we can’t always answer our challenging questions by performing another Google search or reading another book, but to our detriment, we are often reluctant to pick up the phone, send an email or ask a co-worker for help. It’s time to change that mindset. Actively seek out experts—co-workers, friends, or LinkedIn and social media contacts—who can answer questions and add more color to your learning. Don’t be afraid to contact someone outside of your immediate circle or at a vendor. People enjoy sharing and are often honored to be recognized for their expertise. Ask a question. It will enhance your learning.Apply what you’ve learned. Knowledge for knowledge’s sake won’t position your organization for success. Use your new-found knowledge to improve your processes, enhance your communication, implement a new business model or develop better plans. Applying new information on even a small scale helps us retain what we’ve learned and transfer that knowledge to new contexts, meaning we are better able to apply it to solve other problems.All of us hope that social distancing is effective and that the pandemic is over as soon as possible. I encourage you to keep learning through self-directed and digital offerings during the crisis, so you’ll be primed and ready to return to the full blend of options later on. As one example of what’s available, our School of Business Lending has been transformed for virtual delivery at the beginning of June. I certainly do look forward to seeing you at a future in-person learning event. 5SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Christopher Stevenson Christopher Stevenson, CAE, CIE, is SVP/Chief Learning Officer for CUES, where he leads the development and delivery of educational offerings and products and services to help meet the professional … Web: https://www.cues.org Details
May 5, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – The latest human infected with H5N1 avian influenza died of the infection yesterday in Egypt, while a leading influenza expert called H5N1 the worst flu virus he has seen.The Egyptian victim was a 27-year-old woman from Cairo whose H5N1 case was announced yesterday, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). She had been hospitalized with bilateral pneumonia May 1, and a WHO statement yesterday had described her condition as stable.She was the 13th Egyptian confirmed to have an H5N1 infection and the fifth to die of it. Her case was the first reported in Egypt since early April. The WHO’s global case count now stands at 206 cases with 114 deaths.Meanwhile, virologist and influenza expert Robert G. Webster, attending an avian flu conference in Singapore, told the Associated Press (AP), “I’ve worked with flu all my life, and this [H5N1] is the worst influenza virus that I have ever seen.”Webster, who works at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, said that in poultry, the virus invades the brain and destroys the respiratory tract, the AP reported. Concerning the threat of a human pandemic triggered by H5N1, he said, “If that happens, God help us.”According to the story, he predicted it would take at least 10 more mutations to give the virus the ability to spread from person to person. He added there was no way to know when or if that will happen.”All of those mutations are out there . . . but the virus hasn’t succeeded in bringing it together,” Webster was quoted as saying.He also said far more needs to be done to prepare for a pandemic and to understand the virus’s behavior. Calling for stockpiling of more H5N1 vaccine, he labeled current efforts “miserable,” according to the story.Webster said research has been hampered by cultural attitudes preventing autopsies of victims, with autopsies conducted on only six people since the virus began spreading in late 2003.In other developments, the 21 countries in the group Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), meeting in Vietnam, agreed today on a plan for joint efforts to respond to the avian flu situation. The organization consists mostly of Asian and Western Pacific countries, but also includes the United States, Canada, Russia, Mexico, Peru, and Chile.The 5-page plan calls for various kinds of cooperation. For example, the members agreed to:Increase the prompt reporting of avian and human cases and sharing of biological specimensEncourage the business sector to get involved in the prevention and control of avian fluEstablish “best practices and common approaches to risk communications”Work to improve biosecurity on commercial and “transition” poultry farmsDevelop ways to exchange information on “management of travelers” to minimize damage to trade and travelEncourage steps, such as use of pre-authorized visas and customs, to ease the entry of WHO rapid response teams into countries that have invited themSee also:WHO statement on death of Egyptian womanhttp://www.who.int/csr/don/2006_05_05/en/index.html
The OA Lady Twisters get a big time victory against The Bishop Chatard Lady Trojans 3-2“This is a quality win versus a very strong and balanced Chatard team. They beat us 5-0 last year and have all returning starters back.’ Twisters Coach Mark Wilder.Season: 14-0Next match: Monday (5-6) vs. Richmond.