Reflection: a key word for any trainee. I would define it as the critical analysis of specific teaching episodes. Many consider reflection to be the most aggressive accelerating force that powers us on our trajectory towards being outstanding teachers. My question is: does there come a point where reflection can cause us to stall, rather than continue our flight to outstanding?
From the start, we have ideas of what the dynamics of a ‘good lesson’ feel like – we feel these dynamics when we are observing others. However, when the dynamics don’t feel right when we’re teaching, even if we are given positive feedback, it can be the ignition key for over-reflection – whereby we focus on the negatives and ignore the successes. This over-reflection, or dwelling, can be detrimental to our performance and can hamper our confidence as trainee teachers. One teacher told me not to expose any weaknesses in my teaching armour; dwelling on the bad points and letting that shake our confidence can expose our weaknesses to students, who will pick up on this.
My advice: we must learn to reflect and build on the weaker parts of our lessons to keep flying, rather than stall through dwelling.