Permission to Learn

I recently came across the idea of a “permission to learn” card.

I had a chat with a couple of teachers yesterday about how they would feel about something like that.

Neither fancied the idea of them being distributed en masse. However, they quite liked the idea that they could ask for something like that if they felt they were working in an environment where such risk taking was not encouraged. As I outlined in a recent letter to all staff we are keen to encourage teachers to “experiment with their practice” – so these cards might make some contribution to such a cultural shift?

I’ve had a go at producing a mock up

The two sides of the card read:



 This card entitles the holder to take one risk* in his or her own practice/learning. Use this card to try something today that you have never done before.

 Signed…………… ………………Don LedinghamHead of Education, East Lothian Council 

 *This card does not entitle the holder to endanger his/her own or others’ health or safety.



 Today I took a risk with my own learning – it didn’t go as well as I had planned but I learned that………. 

“I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it.” Pablo Picasso

“Pitiful is the person who is afraid of taking risks.” Paulo Coelho

“Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go.” T.S. Elliot 

“You’ll always miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
Wayne Gretzky 

Reading this again it seems a bit corny but I might have a go at producing a few and carrying them around schools on my weekly visits – there again – I might not?



2 thoughts on “Permission to Learn

  1. Sounds great…I missed this posting in past visits…may use myself in my school wide CPD role…

  2. Pingback: Don’s Learning Log » Blog Archive » Using the coaching model in the classroom

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