thanks, i’m failing much better now #tifmbn

Yesterday, I got caught up in a Twitter convo that started with this tweet:

I was game to play with this thought. So I posed into the mix- what does this mindset look like in #OntEd?

The bulk of the thread leaned heavy on system leaders being able rock a growth mindset and the importance of administrators modeling an openness to failure.

Tweeps dropped wisdom about innovation, and research, and student achievement, and changing culture, and social change. Still, I wondered about risk and failure. I wondered whether asking for forgiveness, rather than permission was an actuality for most teachers. I also wondered why it was that when we speak of learning and leading from failure, we expect administrators and system leaders to do it first.

The convo was just the right appetizer to get me thinking about my own practice. I have failed repeatedly and continually in a couple specific endeavours; dropped the ball brilliantly with lesson and classroom design; ignored good feedback; upset parents and parents of parents; and generally made messes that I was not skilled enough to clean up. But I have not really dug in and worked through what that has meant to my practice.

So what next?

For the next few blog posts, I am going to spread out my failures and take a peek at all of their loose ends. I will probably chat out some of my #thoughtfuel with @rchids on our podcast DeCodEd. And I will start messing up my messes with the following questions.

  • What was the goal?
  • At what point did I start failing?
  • Why did I not stop and admit defeat?
  • What could have been done differently?
  • Were there skills deficits that were revealed through the process?
  • Were there skills surpluses that were revealed through this process?
  • Who should I have checked in with during the process?
  • Who should I check in with in order to move past this failure?
  • Now that I have failed, what do I do next with this knowledge?
  • What did I learn from this process?

Please reach out and toss me some feedback about this piece. If there are other questions that I could include in my framework, please send ’em my way.

If you are looking to pull apart your pedagogy a wee bit, I am happy to share my blog space with anyone that wants to post up some words about their own failures in #OntEd.

I can be reached through Twitter @chrisjcluff or via email

Be well,


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