I have just discovered Phil Race (http://phil-race.co.uk) and have just read Chapter 2 of Making Learning Happen (Phil Race, 2005, London, Sage Publications) which uses ripples on a pond to explain the factors to make learning happen. What a simple model to explain something complex. But the thing that has gone click is this quote.
Their [the 5 factors of Wanting, Needing, Doing, Digesting, Feedback] strength lies in their simplicity – at least in terms of the language we can use to describe them. This language is easily shared by teachers and learners alike. But the strength of this way of thinking about learning also lies in its complexity – the way the factors all interact with each other, and don’t need to occur in a set order or pattern. And perhaps the most significant factor is that any or all of these factors can be going on at any instant in our learning – and we can choose to address any or all of them quite intentionally at any moment in our teaching.

The more reading I am doing the more I get the fact that teaching is complex and their are many elements to it, particularly because people are involved! However my using simple models of the parts and recognising that these interact, we come to some kind of understanding or knowledge. However as said before there is no doubt in my mind that to become a skilful teacher it requires doing it, experimenting with different methods and reflecting. For me I am good at processes and getting to grips with them, I like to observe others and review my own practice, I like to analyse (perhaps to death!). However I know that by teaching the coaching processes I get better and better at teaching! Funny that Phil Race has just drawn a simple pond with ripples that explains just that .. check out the link above and tell me what you think ....

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