How and Why Self-directed Learning for Youth labelled “at Risk” is Successful

1. Youth can choose what they learn based on their interests

2. Interest in a topic creates motivation to learn

3. Flexibility in terms of learning activities provides opportunity for learners to make choices

4. Learners can take ownership over their learning and education

5. The level of engagement in learning increases with self-motivation and the power of choice

6. The use of technology promotes independence in learning in terms of scheduling

7. Self-directed learning can include support and mentorship

8. Self-directing learning can promote short and long term goal setting

9. Self-directed learning is progressive in terms of educational programming

10. Self-directed learning is not dependent on attending a school at a certain time (schedule)

11. The flexibility of self-directed learning removes barriers to education such as travel to school, schedules, and the structured, rule-riddled atmosphere of many schools (institutions).

My School Backpack!
My School Backpack!

Personal Development, Staff Development, Teamwork

Can you benefit from a workshop on team-building skills without an opportunity for self-development?  Can you bring anything to the team that is greater than yourself? Many managers look to a 2 day workshop on team-building skills to enhance the productivity, efficiency, etc. of their staff.  And in some cases, it is to increase cooperation and reduce conflict amongst the staff.  The staff of an organization can make or break the organization.  They are the the engine that drives the organization forward, or stalls it, or flips it on its side.  Perhaps personal development is the key, self-reflection, an opportunity to be the best that you can be.  And then you bring the best that you can be to the team.   The schools do not teach us how to be the best that we can be.  Many people are searching and so self-learning has become popular.  The self-help section in the bookstore is growing – the demand is there.  Perhaps we should begin with supporting individuals to be the best that they can be as part of professional development in the work place.  I believe it will more than beneficial.IMG_0621

Random Engagement is Natural – Youth at Risk

The programs or projects which provide an opportunity for engagement and interaction have a better chance of success.  The engagement and interaction can include youth decision-making and influence over programming approaches, details, and activities. Youth gain more traction in a program when they can influence the direction of the program or project.  It is a subtle approach to leadership development and engagement with others.  it can not be prescribed or framed in a work plan but it can be an approach based on the principle of the significance of random, natural engagement – and then the project takes on a life of its own.


The Steeper the Climb – Individual, Organizational, Community Capacity Building

I just found this quote by Paula Abdul:

“The steeper the mountain, the harder the climb, the better the view from the finish line ;)”

We can apply this quote/concept to capacity building for individuals, youth labelled at-risk, communities suffering from years of oppression, and organizations struggling to create healthy workplaces.  The important thing to remember is to develop initiatives that work within the framework of the steeper climb.  Extra supports are needed. Perhaps a holistic approach is required so that all aspects of a persons life are taken into consideration on the climb.  Mountain climbers do use equipment and supports; they do not walk straight up the steepest mountain. We can continue to improve our approach!IMG_1635 IMG_1215

Youth “at-risk” have entrepreneurial skills!

I believe many youth who have been labelled “at-risk” often have skills and knowledge that may position them to be successful entrepreneurs. Successful entrepreneurs often have the following attributes or skills:

1. They take risks.

2.  They have a keen sense of people and can assess the motives or intentions of people very quickly.

3. They can identify opportunities and initiate a plan of action.

4. They have a clear vision of what is fair and what is not.

5. They thrive in self-directed activities and oppose being managed.

6. They are loyal to those who support them.

7. They are independent thinkers.

8. They have survival skills that enable them not to give up during challenging times.

9. They have leadership skills.

Why don’t we develop more entrepreneurial programs as part of our education system? What do you think?

What was the most productive team/staff you worked with?

Think about your best, most productive team/staff experience.  What defined the team? How many of these factors applied?

– had common goals

– the results were more important than who received the credit

-staff cared about the well-being of each other

-they were friends

-there was humour

– staff worked in and outside their job description

– staff had decision-making power and influence on other decisions

– change was embraced as necessary to meet needs of community

-what the organization was doing was more important than the organization itself

– less rules and more expectations

Is this situation created or does it happen naturally when team members have certain characteristics????

What do you think???


Welcome to our Blog! Stay Tuned for articles, information and posts related to our services.

As a Capacity Building Consultant Team our work involves:

Empowering people, organizations, and communities.

What do we do?

community capacity building plans, proposal development to access funding for programs and projects, staff professional development plans, program evaluation, various training workshops that build community and organizational capacity..

More details to follow….