Inspiring Touch

Teaching the art of spa therapies

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Making success visible

In order to get control of my class I have implemented some self assessments for their daily participation marks.  I gave them a rubric with marks 0-4.  My doing this I taking a baby step to implementing some of John Hattie’s techniques in visible learning.  A basic principle in visible learning is to tell the student what they will be learning and give them the answer, this way they can focus on the process and know what success looks like (Hattie, 2010).  The top motivator in Hattie’s research is self reported grades.  “Teachers who have empowered students as true partners in their learning process frequently report that many students are tentative at first, but they eventually accept and enjoy the responsibility and become much more engaged learners” (Barkely, 2010, p. 40).  I have done this for 2 days this past week and so far it has been sucessful,  I look forward to continuing to implement Hatties methods.

Hattie, J. (December 2011). Visible Learning. Pt 2: effective methods. Retrieved from

Barkley, E. F. (2010), Student Engagement Techniques: A Handbook for College Faculty. San Francisco, CA, Jossey-Bass



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I’m too nice

For my class journal assignment this week I had them reflect on their most frustrating part of their week. I told them to be honest. They were all so excited. I was surprised because I thought I had a good relationship with my students and if they were concerned with anything they could come to me. The most common thing that my students were frustrated with is that I’m too nice. I’m new to teaching and I thought what I was supposed to do was create a positive and caring environment for my students.  By being too nice I have been taken advantage of by some of my students. The worst part of this is that my good students are the ones suffering. My top students are always in class on time ready to learn and my other students coming in late and being disruptive interrupting them and my teaching. So now it’s my weekend and I’m on a mission to change the dynamic of my classroom and be less nice.

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Self made youtube star

As part of my class we were assigned to create an online video.

There are many online tools to use to create a video.  I opted to use Powtoon.  I felt it was easy to use, had templates to work with and stock music.

Now the question is where would I use these in my classroom?  I like the idea of using a videos to supplement learning for my class.  Having an introduction video on an online platform could be a fun way to introduce yourself.  I could also use these as reviews to post online.  In my online class I’m taking my instructor uses videos to explain each assignment in the course.  It’s great because you can re watch the video if you are unsure of any part of the assignment. I think my first way I will use these in class is for a case study.

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Flipped lesson

This week I experimented with flipping a lesson.  We are learning makeup and each student is progressing at different speeds and have different areas that interests them.  I have a multicultural class and there is a difference in American and Asian styles of application.  My students had the assignment to find a youtube video about a technique they wanted to learn more about.  In class I paired the students up that had similar videos, each pair choose one video to share with the rest of the class.  The class then worked with their partners and practiced the technique their video was about.  It was a great exercise,  each student was able to focus on an area that interested them and I was able to help them with their technique.  The most priceless reaction was when I asked them to use their phones in class to watch each others videos and use the tutorials to complete their make-up look.  This is another topic for next time, using technology in the class room.

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Authentic Assesment

Today I had the pleasure to take part in VCC’s Fashion Arts Diploma annual fashion show, FIAT MODE XXVII.  This is an event where students show case 5 of their designs in a fashion show for part of their final grade.  I don’t know the full extent of their marking criteria but the instructors from Fashion Arts are in the audience and grade the students final work.  They had look books for their entire collection and all had business cards with links to websites where you can purchase some of their looks.  I was told that there were media and buyers in the audience as well.  The models were prepared by students in my department, hair, make-up and nails all done by students!  It was so amazing to see the final results and see all the students work together for an amazing event.


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The concept of unschooling in new to me.  I think I would have liked being unschooled… free play and I could have chosen when I wanted to learn math, which I feel like would have been never.  But what are the long term effects to a society that lets the children decide when it’s time to learn?  According to research done by Peter Gray as stated in an article in The Globe and Mail “Curious to find out how people who were unschooled in the 1970s and ’80s turned out as adults, Gray surveyed 231 unschooling families across North America and Europe. Of the unschooled adults surveyed, 83 per cent had pursued some form of higher education and 44 per cent had completed at least a bachelor’s degree at university. (Recent statistics show that 51 per cent of Canadian adults have earned a post secondary degree.) Their career choices tended to be creative and self-directed, many were self-employed, and the majority were financially self-sufficient by their mid-20s”

The idea that children who were home schooled ended up in creative self directed jobs makes sense to me.  But how successful would this student be in a conventional classroom or work setting?  I look forward to learning about ways to engage a student who may be more creative and free spirited.


McLaren, L. (2014, Aug. 28). Unschooling is a Luxury of the Wealthy. The Globe and Mail. Retrieved from

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I’m excited to share my journey into Instructional Strategies with everyone.  Over the next few months I will be positing about the course I’m taking and my industry, Skin and Body Therapy.

When I first logged on to the course I was overwhelmed and logged off right away.  Taking part in an online class always seems like so much more work!  You have online discussions, have to make a blog and don’t have physical people around you for support.  The videos my instructor has posted are great to have, breaking down the course and highlighting areas to spend more time on.  The online forums do help  make you feel there is a community within the virtual classroom.

After doing my assigned readings I realized that I have placed value in the course but was setting myself up for failure because I wasn’t expecting myself to do well.  There is a direct relationship to motivation if the student finds value in the class and expects to succeed.  So going forward I will expect to succeed and work hard at the areas I find challenging.