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Critical, Creative and Reflective Practice
What to expect during a CE
a) a lot of listening to others, starting off with autobiographical stories that make it easier to trust and take risks with whoever has joined the particular CE.
b) writing to gather one's thoughts, sometimes privately, sometimes shared.
c) evolution of what you want to find out as you pursue your own inquiries and learn from those of others.
a) Prospective participants are asked not to register if, for the meeting times that you indicate are possible for you, you cannot guarantee live participation in the first session and at least 2 of the other 3 hour-long sessions and spending an equivalent amount of time between sessions on the case.
b) Prepare in advance on technical issues (e.g., using screenshare to share your presentation [see instructions for session3], practice muting and unmuting yourself until it is a habit so no-one has to remind you to mute your mic when you are not talking).
c) Be ready to start at the set time (which usually means clearing the decks and coming into the hangout 5+ minutes early).
d) Use the chat box to put yourself in the queue to talk, but not for side conversations, which distract from listening well, and not for links, which are better posted to the private google+ community.
e) When you talk, use the time more for questions and thoughts you haven't yet got clear on than for stating positions or knowledge that is already well established for you.
f) When you talk, keep it to one point, even if that takes time to express, not a list of points. That helps those who came after to build up a thread. You can take another turn later to insert other points into the discussion.
g) In any check-in or closing, make your point short. Your time to elaborate is during the main phase of any session (or in the work-in-progress presentation or the google+ community).
h) If you post a link to the private google+ community, include text that conveys how the link connects with your own thinking (thus helping others in the group decide whether to visit the link).
Sequence of the CE sessions
The structure of each live session is predefined as follows, but the CE builds in room for participants to take stock so as to inform future proposals for improvements in these structures.
Before the first live session
: You review the scenario, these expectations and mechanics, sign up for the private google+ community for the specific CE and for the wider public CE google+ community in which can double post if and when you choose). Get the required plugins installed for hangouts (by initiating your own test hangout) and make sure you have a functioning headset and are familiar with muting your mic (when not talking) and opening up the hangout chat panel (using tab on left hand side).
Session 1: Participants getting to know each other
to clarify our thoughts and hopes, followed by a check-in (which gives us a chance to acknowledge what is going on for each of us in and beyond the CE), participants take an equal amount of time (5-7 minutes) to tell the story of how they came to be a person who would be interested to participate in a CE on the scenario.
Session finishes with us gathering and sharing our thoughts (using a format like
but posted to the google+ community for the CE).
: Spend at least 90 minutes a) on inquiries related to the case and posting about this to google+ community for the CE; and b) just before session 2, review the google+ community posts of others. (If you are wondering how to define a meaningful and useful line of inquiry, review the scenario for the CE, any associated materials, and posts from other participants. Think about what you would like to learn more about or dig deeper into. You are, in the end, left to judge for yourself whether what interests you is meaningful and useful.)
Session 2: Clarify thinking and inquiries
: Freewriting on our thoughts about the case, followed by a check-in. Then turn-taking “dialogue process” to clarify what we are thinking about the case. Session finishes with us gathering and sharing our thoughts as we look ahead to making
work-in-progress (W-I-P) presentations
in session 3.
: Spend at least 90 minutes a) on inquiries related to the case and b) preparing a W-I-P presentation.
Before session 3, use the menu options on your ppt, pdf, etc. software to remove toolbars etc., so the window you "screenshare" on your presentation is as close as you can get to a full-screen or slide-show mode. As a backup in case of technical snags, upload W-I-P presentation to google drive (or somewhere else online) and make a post on the google+ community that links to it. (For a ppt, check that the slides appear as you intended. If not, create a pdf and upload that instead.)
Session 3: Work-in-progress presentations
: (5-7 minutes total for each participant [depending on the number of participants])
is made by everyone on each presentation (posted as a chat on google+ for the community). Time permitting, participants also speak some questions or make suggestions.
To share a presentation from your computer, use screenshare option on left of google hangout but do NOT switch to full screen or slide show mode (because this mode is not viewable by the others on hangout). (If you are experienced in using presentation mode for a file uploaded to google drive, you can get full screen view, but instructions are not given here.)
If you do not see the shared presentation in the center screen, view it via the speaker's post to the google+ community.
: Post additional feedback on presentations (optional). Digest the feedback on your presentation and produce final report by revising W-I-P presentation, uploading it to somewhere accessible (e.g., google docs or a blogpost) and posting a link to the google+ community for the CE. Begin making reflective posts (optional).
Session 4: Taking Stock
: Freewriting to bring our thoughts to the surface, followed by a check-in. Turn-taking “dialogue process” to explore our thinking about a) how the CE contributed to the topic and b) to the experiential goal, as well as c) how to extend what has emerged during the CE. Session finishes with us gathering and sharing our thoughts as before, but this time we will be reviewing the whole CE (using a format like
but posted to the google+ community).
After session 4
(optional): Participants share on the wider community not only the reports they have prepared but also reflections on the CE process.
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