Unpacking the process

I’m on my second LIANZA revalidation round. One of the things I really appreciate about going through the process is that it forces me to look at what I’ve been doing over the previous three years. The first time I did it, I was regularly blogging about what I was doing. I’d looked at the BOK areas, and had picked out the areas I needed to concentrate on. I worked strategically across the three years and all the BOKs. I ended up with more activites in the areas that I was concentrating on. Not surprising – my focus was on those areas in the fear that I might not get to anything, so I ended up going to everything!

This time round I have been much less strategic about the activites I’ve been going to. I haven’t been blogging as much so consequently I don’t have as many ‘pre-canned lessons learned’ paragraphs. I’ve changed jobs to something that is much more operational than strategic, so a lot of my focus has been on refining the operational tasks that we do. As a consequence of this, although I have the all the BOK areas covered, the things that I want to include are often the same thing (e.g. orientation for students) once every year. I think this demonstrates my ongoing learning and refinement, but it’s not really appropriate for the specific requirements of revalidation.

There are other activities that I’ve been doing that a very relevant to my role in the organisation. Some have been over almost two years (te reo classes) while others have been over a couple of months (working in groups). I’ve also been going to a regular breakfast meeting with a group of peers (known as #WellyLibBfast). I wanted to set up something that was informal, not associated with LIANZA, where the people who were interested in the same things I was interested in, could meet and chat over food. It’s been a very interesting experience having that as an ongoing practice.

Since I wasn’t as organised as last time, this has been my process for this revalidation round.

  • List all the activities for each of the three years.
  • Assign a BOK to each one.
  • Sort by Year, by BOK.
  • Assess the three years. Aim for the required coverage for revalidation.
  • Select the ‘best’ activities for each year.
  • Write the document.

I am a compulsive note-taker so I have notes from each activity. What I’m struggling with is keeping it to a snapshot of what I learned then, at the time of the activity. The way I work is to draw strands from many different areas then combine them into something new. This means that I’m constantly mulling things over as new information is added. Therefore I’m finding it a bit tricky to stall my thinking at the time of the activity.

This teaches me that I need to work strategically over the next three years for revalidation. In fact, you may have noticed that I’m blogging more. Again. I’m also trying to blog during the process (see the projected 6 steps to redesign orientation) even if the writing is rough. ‘Think, then test, then refine, then test’ is a process that is being worked with the students at the kura and one which I’m planning to adhere to more. I’ve also been influenced by this article on keeping a diary. I’m not interested in going back and keeping a daily diary (yet) but it’s reminded me to blog more.

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