Mini Lesson 7

Reflecting on your Learning Opportunity

IN THIS MINI LESSON

  • What is a Self-Reflection
  • Why a Self-Reflection is one of the most powerful tools you have
  • How to use the u.school Reflection Tool

RESOURCES RELATED TO THIS MINI LESSON

TEXT SUMMARY OF MINI LESSON 7

One of the most powerful tools you have at your disposal is the Self-Reflection.

A self-reflection helps when it comes time to Tell Your Story.

A self-reflection helps Record your Learning Opportunity

A self-reflection is a great type of Evidence of Learning

A self-reflection helps you plan your next steps on your Learning Journey

A self-reflection helps you become a self-directed learner

A self-reflection helps you understand who you are as a learner and helps identify your signature strengths

A self-reflection helps you answer the dreaded interview question, "Tell me a little bit about yourself."

Getting into the habit of doing a self-reflection after a Learning Opportunity is one of the best ways to live your life intentionally, to open up paths that will work for you, and to prepare yourself for whatever adventure waits for you.

The Reflect Form

Let's take a look at the Reflect Tools that we have built to help you self-reflect.

Just like with the Record Form we have a full version, a simplified version, and reflection questions.

You are free to select the tool that works best for you. You are also free to invent a tool or process of your own. You might find that you reflect best when you do it as a conversation with a friend. Perhaps you want to record an "interview" that a friend/classmate/parent conducts with you. Maybe you turn that into a podcast where each episode you reflect on a finished Learning Opportunity. Yes. Be creative.

But before you get started on that... let me explain what we have in our Reflect Form so that you can understand what we mean by self-reflection.

The Reflect Tool operates a bit like The Record Tool. It is a Google Form that will create a stand alone document that you will own. There are a few required questions that are used to create/name/share the document correctly. Every other question is optional.

Typically a self-reflection is tied directly to a specific Learning Opportunity. The form asks for the name of the Learning Opportunity that this reflection is associated with. But we understand that sometimes a reflection is broader than a single Learning Opportunity. You can use this field to give a title that most accurately describes what you are reflecting on. Don't worry, it doesn't have to match with an existing Record that you already created. It is meant to give you a clue to the content and context of this reflection down the road. If your reflection is specific to a Learning Opportunity and you can match the title up with a Record you are creating for that Learning Opportunity, all the better. It will make it easier to put those together down the road.

Plus, if you are using the Reflection as Evidence of Learning for a Learning Opportunity, you should try and get the titles to match up so that you can link all of those together.

The documents created by the Record Tool and the Reflect Tool will exist in your Google Drive. After completing the forms you will have full control over them. If you needed to go back and edit the name of the Learning Opportunity to match up better, you will be able to do that. If you needed to go back and add a link to the Reflection so that it can be included in your Record as Evidence of Learning, you can do that. These are intentionally designed so that you have full control over them. You can edit them, move them, copy them, print them.

The form asks if you would like to share this document with an advisor or guide. This is optional. If it makes sense for you to share it, go ahead.

The remaining questions are designed to guide your reflection a little bit. Remember, a reflection is about You. It isn't about the content of a Learning Opportunity. That will be captured by the Record Tool. Instead this is meant for you to think about yourself.

Each guided question is optional. They are meant to help you trigger insights and ask yourself deeper questions. Some questions will make more sense than others depending on what occurred during the Learning Opportunity. Feel free to answer them in a way that makes sense to you for that Learning Opportunity. You can skip the ones that don't fit or you can go into great detail on the ones that need it.

There is a final open ended question that gives you an opportunity to talk about whatever you want for this reflection. We don't pretend that our guiding questions are the only things worthy of talking about. They are a starting point but they might not capture everything that could be important for you to reflect on.

These guiding questions are meant to help you reflect. If you want something even more open ended. Something that doesn't guide you at all. We have a Simplified Reflect Tool. It will also create a structured document but it is entirely open ended. It doesn't guide you at all. If you just want to create your own document or audio recording or video reflection, you can use the Reflection Questions to help guide your thinking. These are the same questions in the Reflect Tool but they are just in text form. You can print them out, save them, copy and paste them into your own document. Whatever works for you.

We are big fans of self-reflection at u.school. It is a terrific tool to help you integrate your learning, plan a Learning Journey, and Tell Your Story. It also makes for great Evidence of Learning. We highly recommend you include self-reflection into your Learning Journey. But we also want you to own your Learning Journey. Do what works best for you.


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