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How I use storytelling to create transformative learning

As humans, we use stories to remember everything. This is how we make sense of the world around us. Some of the most memorable lessons we learn come from stories. For example; ‘slow and steady wins the race’, ‘don’t fly too close to the sun’, ‘still waters run deep’, and…

‘Sharpen the saw’

An old woodsman was walking through a forest on a hot summer day. He came across a young woodsman fruitlessly hacking away at a tree with a blunt saw. “You could cut down those trees quicker if you stop to sharpen that saw”, the old woodsman advised. The young woodsman carried on sweating and sawing, and said; “Stop?! Can’t you see how many trees I need to chop down?! I don’t have time to stop!!!”

Just like a blunt saw is an inefficient tool to cut down trees, a tired mind is an inefficient tool for digesting knowledge. Breaking from your regular routine to rest and reflect will help you get the most from your learning. You should regularly pause and ask yourself; what kind of learner am I? Am I using the best learning tools for me? How can I improve my approach? What is my favourite part of this course? What am I finding challenging?

Learning is all about transforming your behaviour. The story of the two woodsmen highlights the importance of reflective practice, something that we have integrated into our learning design here at AVADO. We incorporate a study week into our structured programmes to allow our learners time for reflection, research and to embed knowledge.

In the long term, reflective practice helps you achieve better results, and apply your learning to your ‘real work’. That why we’re here, right? To improve your career prospects, strengthen your professional skills, and contribute to your professional communities.

In designing our online CIPD courses, I use stories like this to transform thinking and help learners develop new professional skills. By using classic story-telling techniques, I create memorable journeys that end with a stronger understanding of core concepts and an ability to apply new professional skills.

Jess Isaacs

Jess Isaacs

Posted March 17, 2017
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