Randy Pausch of the Last Lecture fame called it the Head Fake. If you haven’t seen his amazing video watch it below on YouTube. It is the secret to teaching and getting your students to get amazing results.
Students rarely ask for what they need. They always ask for what they want. What they want and what they need may not necessarily align.
Wow that was quite a statement, what the heck does that mean?
When someone raises their hand and asks for help, or when they decide that there is something that they need to learn, quite often they don’t know exactly what to ask for. That is the paradox of the student. They know there is something lacking but they don’t know what. So instead of asking for what they really need, they ask for what they want.
Have you had this experience? Have you been asked
“show me how to make a million dollars”, “Show me how to get a better evaluation.” “Show me how to get my children to listen to me.”
So what they want is a Million Dollars, A Better Evaluation, Children that Listen to Me.
What they need is a Business, Focus on Becoming a More Effective Employee, Communication Skills.
It is the difference of taking responsibility for yourself and looking for an outside source to their success. It is your job as a teacher to listen to what they want, and then translate it to what they need.
You will then teach them what they need while continually focusing on what they want as a goal. They think that they will be learning about making a million dollars, getting a better evaluation, or having children that listen to them, what they will actually be learning is business skills, how to be more effective in their position, and communication skills.
So listen to what they want, and give them what they need. Then watch Randy Pausch below to see a master teacher.