At Apprentice Learning, our mission states that we, “give apprentice students authentic opportunities to learn good habits of work, gain a better understanding of what it takes to succeed, and learn how to measure success in one’s chosen field.”
Apprentices have completed Spring apprenticeships, giving me pause to think about these authentic moments. When did I see them? When did Apprentices notice them? Are they carefully planned, haphazard, or do they occur as an integral part of an apprenticeship?
So we interviewed students. Here’s what one Apprentice picked up during her workplace experience, “Make sure you are good at the job, don’t lollygag, don’t sit in the corner, don’t use your phone when you are not supposed to, make sure you have your eyes open and you are doing the job right. If you mess up, apologize, and hopefully they will understand. Don’t be rude to your boss, that’s the main person who will give you a recommendation.”
Observation is such an important part of the learning process. We don’t want to discount what young people learn from what happens around them. It’s one of the most important reasons for having Apprentices travel to a workplace. Placing Apprentices in work environments where they observe adults who don’t “lollygag” helps reinforce these basic lessons that begin at at home and are reinforced at school, in our program, and in the workplace.