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Any parent or teacher will have heard the line from a child ‘why do I have to do this?’.

It’s likely to pop out when that child is bored, desperately wants to be doing something else or doesn’t see how the activity will benefit them.

And you know what, many of us never really grow out of asking it. Just think of a professional learning session you’ve been to in a school in the last decade where as you’ve walked a fully grown adult has murmured ‘why do I have to do this?’.

Now, many tired parents will admit that they’ve fallen into the trap of answering this question with the less than compelling answer: ’because I said so’. But if we are honest with ourselves as school leaders, how often do we use this same answer ourselves? (Hey, we are tired too right?)

But what if we all made a commitment to having a powerful answer to the question of ‘why do I have to do this?’ for the next PL learning day you plan or the EC Premium link that you share. Indeed a commitment to do this aligns with a principle that is often referenced first when it comes to adult learning, namely ‘a need to know.’

Maybe compliance can be given a personal angle: ‘We are doing anaphylaxis training again because we want every parent to know that when they drop their child off each day, we can look them in the eye and say that we will do everything we can if the worst case situation happens.’

Or ‘this diversity and inclusion training matters, because whilst we are all great people, we sometimes get things a little bit wrong, and these little things can actually be really big’.

Or if that fails, you’ve always got ‘because I said so’. 😉

The EC Team


Aaron Tait

Aaron is a co-founder of EC by Go1 and Vice President of Marketing. Since 2012 Aaron has developed and delivered professional learning programs K-12 education staff across the world. He is the co-author of the books Edupreneur (Wiley) and Dream Team (ASCD).

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