David and Andrew's discussion of how using Deming in the classroom not only inspires achievement it also creates collaboration among excited students.
0:00:01.9 Andrew Stotz: My name is Andrew Stotz, and I'll be your host as we continue our journey into the teachings of Dr. W. Edwards Deming. Today, we continue our series of Deming in Education with David P. Langford where we explore Deming's thinking to create joy in learning. David Langford has devoted his life to applying Dr. Deming's philosophy to help everyone get the most out of learning. Today's topic is "By what method?" David, take it away.
0:00:28.9 David Langford: Great. So in previous broadcasts, we've talked a lot about deadlines and processes, and operational definitions and quality standards and all kinds of things like that. So today I wanted to talk about, "By what method?" Dr. Deming tattooed that on my forehead, because so many times people would propose things to him and he would say, "By what method?" in his Deming voice. It's all about the method of what it is you're going to do. So what I learned to do is, instead of trying to calculate, "Is this a 92 or an 88 or 88.1?" and then I got the student upset with me, and then because I gave them an 89, I messed up their GPA, and now, so now they're not gonna get a scholarship, and now Mom and Dad is mad at me and it just goes on and on and on. And so, instead of trying to improve that process, I started working on a method to completely get out of it, and especially today, especially in K-12, lots of schools are trying to go to what they call standards-based grading, where they want all students to achieve, but unless... If you start applying a new theory like that, but you keep it in the old system for the last several hundred years, you're gonna have problems.
0:02:08.0 DL: So I had to figure out how can I do that? What can I do? Well, over time it slowly evolved into a process where if somebody turned in an assignment and it met or exceeded the standard for the assignment, then I started to say, "Well, you got that one", to kids and students. Well, that finally, I started to realize, well, why can't that just be my grade book? Either you got a one, which signifies that on this assignment, you did it to standard and you did everything required and you got a one, or it's just blank. If it's just blank, it means you still have to keep working on it to get a one.
0:02:57.9 AS: Just to clarify that. When you say met or exceeded, that's one statement, that's not saying met is one thing and exceeded is another. Is that correct?
0:03:06.3 DL: That's right.
0:03:07.2 AS: Okay.
0:03:07.3 DL: Because yes, we have a quality standard with this assignment, but I may be really interested in this, and so I did a whole bunch more than was required. Right? And so, I still wanna recognize that with students, "Look at, look at this, look what this. You did this and you went above and beyond the standard." Right?
0:03:27.8 AS: Right.
0:03:28.3 DL: So you still get a one for doing that, and I'm not gonna take away your desire to go above the standard by giving you A+++ or all kinds of games that teachers play. You got that one, which is awesome, and the rest is just joy and learning for you. Or if you went above the standard, okay, I might give you a chance to share what you did with the rest of class.
0:03:58.6 AS: That's what I was just thinking about. Yeah.
0:04:01.8 DL: Yeah, yeah. And I'm gonna ask you, I'm gonna ask you, "Would you be willing to share this?" I'd say, 99% of the time, kids said, "Yeah, yeah, I'd be glad to share this." And I would say the same thing to them. "Okay, but when you share what you did and the level you took this to, I want you to describe by what method did you do that."
0:04:23.2 DL: And it was so fascinating because students would say, "You know, this is what I did, and this is my project, and this how it turned out, and I'