Clare Erasmus is head of the technology faculty and head of mental wellbeing at Brighton Hill Community School in Hampshire. Here are her top five tips for the healthy promotion of failure in the classroom:
– Set up tasks without overly scaffolding the routes to completion. Ensure the student has to learn their own decoding and navigation skills. They will enjoy the creative and open process.
– Don’t always create “perfect”, complete documents in class. Instead offer “prototypes and working, fluid documents”. There is always something better around the corner. Students should always be thinking, “How can I improve my idea?”
– Welcome unusual thinking. If properly justified, tasks can be tackled from different angles and this should be encouraged.
– Let the students see that their teacher is human and can fail sometimes, too. Let them witness your risk-taking. Show them that it is OK to get things wrong.
– Failure is inevitable; no one gets it right perfectly first time. So, think about strategies for tackling a problem and then set about testing them.