Integrating pedagogy and Covey's first three habits of highly effective people : an inside-out approach

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Hall, Gregory B.
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, 1998
This project investigates Stephen Covey's first three habits of effectiveness and their application to problems a teacher was experiencing. Greg Hall, the teacher completing the project, utilizes the habits of "Be Proactive, Begin With the End in Mind and Put First Things First" and uses them to help with pedagogical problems being experienced by him. The project produced the following findings in relation to Habit One. By being at least partially proactive Hall was able to do something about the problem of interruptions. Being proactive helped improve his attitude and, as a result, his response to interruptions. In turn this enhanced the classroom atmosphere. Problems required Hall to reflect on and identify a proactive plan. Hall discovered that behavior, through the development of proactivity, can become more conscious. Attitude, or 'frame of reference', is the most important factor in this process. Whether it is positive or negative, it will be fulfilled. As Covey (1987) writes: "Be a light, not a judge. Be a model, not a critic. Be part of the solution, not part of the problem." The project produced the following finding in relation to Habit Two. The development of a mission statement has helped Hall to clarify what it is he desires from his teaching. The development of the mission statement as an end product was useful. The process was lengthy but was meaningful. Hall discovered that a metaphoric way of looking at the end result of teaching might be at least as powerful as a mission statement. The project produced the following findings in relation to Habit Three. Covey (1987) indicates that a significant amount of time in quadrant two is essential to effectiveness. Hall found that increased time in quadrant two, planning and preparing for a unit of study, was an important reason for the success of a unit. Hall believes that most significant of all was the weaving of the various factors: quadrant two time, multiple intelligence research and practice, cooperative learning research and practice and Glenn's (1988) research and practice. Hall found that the ideal to work toward is reducing time spent in quadrant three, eliminating time spent in quadrant four and increasing time spent in quadrant two. As he invested more time on the planning, prevention, and relationship-building activities of quadrant two, he found that he spent far less time reacting to crises. The result of utilizing Covey's first three habits of effectiveness was better pedagogy in Mr. Hall's classroom. Hall discovered that Habit One, be proactive, is the most powerful of the three habits because it fundamentally is about thoughtful metacognitive functioning. More importantly Habit One is about improving attitude which is a building block to the other two habits.
viii, 58 p. ; 29 cm. --
Covey, Stephen R. The seven habits of highly effective people , Teaching , Teacher-student relationships , Teaching -- Methods