Wrexham Glyndwr University UK


The Journey Stick Report

Journey Stick Comments from Glyndwr University

Comments from PGCE Students (3) and Experienced Training Provider

Each person considered it was very important how this idea was ‘framed’ and ‘set up’ in the classroom and it would need to be made interesting for the idea to accurately succeed.

It was considered that the journey stick was a reflective idea and underpins learning rather than being central the central focus of the learning materials.

The people questioned were surprised that this was an actual ‘physical stick’, as they thought it was metaphorical (That may have been the way I presented the idea).

It was considered that this could be appropriate for younger children, but, not for the target age range of the project.

I was asked why a VLOG, BLOG, snapchat, Instagram approach could not be considered, as this would be a far more modern take on the idea.

Overall there was not a great deal of support for the idea as a central learning tool.


Comments from colleague that teaches on the PGCE Course and has experience of teaching and assessing from Levels 2 to 7.

For a fuller response I showed him the information that had been sent through. Please see comments below:-

Looking at the info you sent over regarding “journey sticks”, I am still a little confused as to the expected outcomes and perceived value.  I presume we are looking at cohorts (expected to use them) who may have paid for a course and whose time is valuable.  These aspects mean that there should be a clear (anticipated) outcome which has some value to the user.  This isn’t clear.

I appreciate that the notes provided are draft, but there are some major differences and this would need to be sorted up front, prior to any approval.

The guidance notes provided appear to be aimed at ‘untrained’ trainers rather than HE educators – is that the intention ?

The objectives stated in the guidance notes are unclear (they are not objectives).

The stick itself seems totally superfluous to the needs of the exercise, if I read the supporting notes right…  There also seems to be an unsupported ‘download’ of key (HE linked) words which should add value to the process, but in my mind do not due to lack of supporting rationale.

I do not mean to be negative about this, but it looks (on the surface) to be a bit ‘gimmicky’.  Given greater rationale and explanation then there may be some (great) value in it.  In the meantime, it would not be something that I would ‘use budget for’.


Further comments

I have no photographic / visual evidence of the discussions that I have had with three individuals (one educator and two social entrepreneurs) that I have spoken to about this journey stick.

We did not actually construct journey sticks but we discussed the creative process of constructing a stick and what first emerged was a consensus on how it   could be used as an ice breaker and then it was identified as being an example of a  practical hands on ‘prop’ to get individuals as well as a group of such individuals to look at their individual and collective experiences in a different / not their normal way.  

It was felt that this non normal active could encourage thought processes that could lead to innovation and creativity. It was agreed that the process would be uncomfortable/embarrassing for some individuals but in the right context / environment a ‘prop’ could be a means of taking individuals out of their comfort zone and with appropriate support and encouragement provoke original thought and discussion. Such discussion could then be used as a means to reflect on their individual and collective actions or doings and from which understanding could to explored and in so doing identify the achievement of individual and in turn collective/organisational learning.

Discussions identified that there could be other materials / visual aids used as practical hands on and / or electronic media as ‘props’ besides a journey stick and that the generation of a journey stick on its own did not form a framework of factors. It was felt that the use of a stick could be seen as being useful for some age groups but not necessarily the most appropriate tool for use by all.

In the context of SEDETT it seemed to the group that there was a need to explore the factors emerging from practitioners in terms of their approaches to innovation and enterprise to ensure the sustainability of their social enterprise organisation.  Such factors are / will emerge from the work on IO1 / IO2 and may need to take account of the person, the idea being considered, the process of operations they perform and the organisational context / culture that is in existence in a particular location at a particular time.  It was felt that these issues and perhaps other factors need to be identified, formed into a learning framework and tried and tested during the project so as to help ensure that the material developed in Io2 is as useful as it can be for different types of learning situations.

There was some inconclusive discussion on the differing learning styles of individuals and how this might or might not also impact on the emergent framework.