Who knows best is in the lead

The team member (student, parent, teacher, intern, or volunteer) that knows best should be in the lead. This varies depending on the subject.

Freedom to play

Everybody (staff, students etcetera) should have the freedom to play, study, experiment, fail and reflect with others. Rob believes that learning is an iterative process. Playing, studying, experimenting, failing (and being honest about that) is not only a great way to learn when you’re reflecting with others on a regular basis, it is also the only way to become a successful lifelong learner. Because lifelong learning is an iterative process.
If you don’t treat your co-workers this way, how can they help students to grow up as lifelong learners?

Don’t talk about doing something new, do it!

When a co-worker asks Rob if she can try something with her coach group, his response is: Don’t spend a lot of time talking and preparing. Spend that time afterwards during reflection, and adept. Work agile. Have faith in yourself, you’re a professional. Try first, be kind and honest about it to your students, reflect on it together and share what you’ve learned (with your co-workers).

Quote Johan Cruijff:

You should never do as I say.
You should listen to what I have to say and make your own decision.


The difference between 2015, when Rob started at Agora, and now? In 2015 he and the team panicked every other week, and it lasted a week. Now they panic every three months, and they accepted that. They learned that this is part of growing into the next phase. It’s an iterative process: it’s reflection time.