Friday, September 24, 2010

TAGteacher Tale - I Changed the Way I Teach!

Thanks to Marcia Nelson who tells us how learning about TAGteach has changed the way she teaches...

I have turned my teaching style upside down from my old ways when I was introduced to the TAGteach system complete with taggers for my students a few years back at the Clicker Convention in LA.

I've used it now for several years with children in their horsemanship and riding lessons. I use it when I see something they do extraordinary in remembering something they were taught. I use it to set up a challenge for them that either they set up or I set up and I use it for other kids in the class to watch for something that their classmate is working on.

I find that children can only hold a small amount of instruction without being discouraged because coaches like me that are perfectionists tend to find what still needs fixing and forget how much is going well!! Especially when they are riding a horse because there are sooo many elements. I let them know we're picking only one thing to tag, the rest of the things can be whatever, we're only looking at one thing. What a mind blower it is for kids that think they have to get it all right or nothing!! It helps me to keep it age & maturity appropriate for each child this way too. The funny thing is that once we have positively worked with them on something and go to another item when it is good is that they stay pretty darn good on the previous thing we worked on and so we build them up while only focusing on one item at a time!

I have a very bright young one that is succeeding very steadily with this process as I shape her a bit at a time and don't worry that it is not all being fixed in one setting. I'm jazzed to see where she has come in just two weeks of working the tagger system. Prior to that she was good the first few lessons when it was all new and then she knew it all and was like a greased pig to keep in line and heading in a steady direction which is an absolute necessity around horses.

Finding a balance with each personality is sure a necessity and it has to be shaped over and over as you go. Who says we aren't creative artists?? This is incredibly artistic to sort out and keep moving in a forward positive direction.

Marcia Nelson


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