The following quotation comes from the end of one of my student’s recent reflections. This was private correspondence, but the student gave me permission to quote it here.
On an unrelated note, working on the exercises you’ve given us has presented me a sort of humbling fact: I have no idea how ANY of the stuff I’ve actually put together works. I mean, it certainly works, but if I were asked on the spot how certain practices directly impact the design of my program, I’d be more or less speechless. Obviously, I’m learning these things now, but I wonder how much of the design process would have been more smooth had I actually followed these best practices on the spot. I’ve basically been applying the practices as seen from certain examples I’ve pulled inspiration from, but it dawns on me that I didn’t actually realize they were there. I’ve read a bunch of the materials you gave us access to, but it really didn’t hit me as to how effective the practices can be in your program.
This is one of the most honest and inspiring expressions I’ve read in any of the reflections. It is a heartfelt admission of vulnerability. This is humility. This is gazing up at the night sky and realizing how much there is out there. This is demolition of the ego. This is victory over second-order ignorance. This student is ready to learn.