What is learning? In my opinion, learning is changing behavior. A team leader can change a team's behavior with new goals, training, motivation, rewards, incentives and leadership.

J. Willard Marriott, Chairman and CEO, Marriott International, Inc.

'Our nation's long-term ability to succeed in exporting to the growing global marketplace hinges on the abilities of today's students. "J. Willard Marriott, Chairman and CEO, Marriott International, Inc.

The Conference Board, Partnership for the 21-st Century skills, Corporate Voices for Working Families and the Society of Human Resources Management identified the top five skills that students will need to learn to enter the workforce. The top five skills are:

  1. Professionalism 93.8%
  2. Teamwork 94. 4%
  3. Oral communication 70. 3 %
  4. Ethics and Social Responsibility 63.4 %
  5. Reading Comprehension 62.5 %

Teamwork is an essential skill that students need to learn when entering the workforce.

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The Corporate Learning Institute's team building training programs: Team building is about increasing motivation, improving communication, and building trust within each other while committing to and reaching a common goal. The Corporate Learning Institute has specialized in creating interactive Team Building Programs to deliver enhanced results and accomplish what other programs fail to do. Corporate Learning Institute provide fun to strategic team building events designed to increase the performance of your people and organization.

The Corporate Learning Institute's team building training programs teaches, inspire, renew and challenge your people to become powerful performers. This expert consultation and facilitation ensures that participants learn the skills at our team building training programs that are critical to their success back at work. By providing these team-building services, our ultimate goal is to help you achieve both personal and organizational success. The Corporate Learning Institute provides customized Team Building Training and development workshops, strategic team building retreats, high ropes courses, fun team building events, DiSC or MBTI assessments and intense team building programs. For maximum return on investment, Corporate Learning Institute team-building services are custom-designed to help you achieve the team building goals of your organization.

Corporate Learning Institute's Chicago High Ropes Course and Low Ropes Course are located deep in the woods of Marriott's Hickory Ridge Conference Hotel. This facility provides everything you require for meetings, meals and overnight stays. There is no need to arrange for transportation to The Expedition High Ropes Course – it is a convenient two minute walk from the main entrance. Corporate Learning Institute's teambuilding

SYNERGY LEARNING SYSTEMS' TEAM Developing teams requires skill and intention to achieve maximum potential. Synergy Learning Systems' team building programs are hands-on and highly interactive, fully engaging both the mind and the body to insure that teams are able to meet the twists and turns of business in the new millennium.

One of the most powerful methods for adults to learn is the use of challenges that engage participants in experiential learning, a learning process that involves action, reflection, generalization and application. Following each team challenge, a facilitated discussion helps team members move quickly through the learning cycle and make course corrections on the spot.

Feedback is immediate and connects actions to results. Issues involving team communication, decision making, and leader/member dynamics surface and are addressed in a productive and safe environment. After these team building experiences, participants are much more likely to apply newly learned behaviors because they have learned how it actually feels to practice and experience the benefits of using those behaviors. Teams identify actions that they can apply directly back at work which will help them be a more productive team. Synergy Learning Systems

Ray Kroc

Ray Kroc, the founder of McDonald's said:

"When I am green, I am growing and when I am ripe, I start to rot"

Life long learning; I tell my students that change will be constant in our life, so we need to learn how to learn.

Do you need soft skills training?

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HRDQ can help you out. Click to find out more about the tools they have for teambuilding. I use them and they work.

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Teambuilders Learning Events

You are a member of a space crew who has crash-landed on the planet of Acrab. After being taken captive by aliens, the only way you can escape is to rebuild your transformational girospeckter. But can your team solve the alien's puzzles quickly enough to repair your spaceship and get away?

Challenge your participants' imaginations with TeamBuilders: 10 Adventures in Working Together, a new collection of learning events that encourage the exploration of team skills through the use of fantasy scenarios. The TeamBuilders adventures, based on Experiential Learning Methodology, guide participants through five phases of learning:

Experiencing: Formulating ideas and gathering information during the learning experience.

Sharing: Articulating the learning experience to other participants.

Interpreting: Understanding the skills and behaviors experienced.

Generalizing: Developing testable hypotheses from the learning experience.

Applying: Bridging the present and future by understanding how generalizations can be used in the workplace

TeamBuilders enhances the development of five fundamental team skills:

Decision Making
Problem Solving

TeamBuilders also addresses critical secondary skills such as trust, managing diversity, assertiveness, influence, conflict management, negotiating, and more. Activities may be used independently or paired together as part of team training.

Organized in a 3-ring binder, each TeamBuilders simulation contains background information and facilitator instructions, as well as reproducible participant materials including role-specific briefing information , observer instructions, discussion questions, and a team skill handout. TeamBuilders also includes a CD-ROM containing printable files of the reproducible participant materials.

Learn more about these tools for teambuilding. Visit HRDQ:

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Excerpt from: Heart of a Teacher,

by Paula Fox 

He was in the first third grade class I taught at Saint Mary's School in Morris, Minnesota. All 34 of my students were dear to me, but Mark Eklund was one in a million. Very neat in appearance, he had that happy-to-be-alive attitude that made even his occasional mischievousness delightful.

Mark talked incessantly. I had to remind him again and again that talking without permission was not acceptable. What impressed me so much, though, was his sincere response every time I had to correct him for misbehaving. "Thank you for correcting me, Sister!" I didn't know what to make of it at first, but before long I became accustomed to hearing it many times a day.

One morning my patience was growing thin when Mark talked once too often, and then I made a novice teacher's mistake. I looked at Mark and said, "If you say one more word, I am going to tape your mouth shut!" It wasn't ten seconds later when Chuck blurted out, "Mark is talking again." I hadn't asked any of the students to help me watch Mark, but since I had stated the punishment in front of the class, I had to act on it. I remember the scene as if it had occurred this morning. I walked to my desk, very deliberately opened my drawer and took out a roll of masking tape. Without saying a word, I proceeded to Mark's desk, tore off two pieces of tape and made a big X with them over his mouth. I then returned to the front of the room. As I glanced at Mark to see how he was doing, he winked at me. That did it! I started laughing. The class cheered as I walked back to Mark's desk, removed the tape, and shrugged my shoulders. His first words were, "Thank you for correcting me, Sister."

At the end of the year, I was asked to teach junior-high math. The years flew by, and before I knew it Mark was in my classroom again. He was more handsome than ever and just as polite. Since he had to listen carefully to my instruction in the "new math," he did not talk as much in ninth grade as he had in third. One Friday, things just didn't feel right. We had worked hard on a new concept all week, and I sensed that the students were frowning, frustrated with themselves and edgy with one another. I had to stop this crankiness before it got out of hand. So I asked them to list the names of the other students in the room on two sheets of paper, leaving a space between each name. Then I told them to think of the nicest thing they could say about each of their classmates and write it down. It took the remainder of the class period to finish their assignment, and as the students left the room, each one handed me the papers. Charlie smiled. Mark said, "Thank you for teaching me, Sister. Have a good weekend." That Saturday, I wrote down the name of each student on a separate sheet of paper, and I listed what everyone else had said about that individual.

On Monday I gave each student his or her list. Before long, the entire class was smiling. "Really?" I heard whispered. "I never knew that meant anything to anyone! I didn't know others liked me so much." No one ever mentioned those papers in class again. I never knew if they discussed them after class or with their parents, but it didn't matter. The exercise had accomplished its purpose. The students were happy with themselves and one another again.

That group of students moved on. Several years later, after I returned from vacation, my parents met me at the airport. As we were driving home, Mother asked me the usual questions about the trip, the weather, my experiences in general. There was a lull in the conversation. Mother gave Dad a sideways glance and simply said, "Dad?" My father cleared his throat as he usually did before something important. "The Eklunds called last night," he began. "Really?" I said. "I haven't heard from them in years. I wonder how Mark is." Dad responded quietly. "Mark was killed in Vietnam," he said. "The funeral is tomorrow, and his parents would like it if you could attend." To this day I can still point to the exact spot on I-494 where Dad told me about Mark. 

I had never seen a serviceman in a military coffin before. Mark looked so handsome, so mature. All I could think at that moment was, "Mark, I would give all the masking tape in the world if only you would talk to me." The church was packed with Mark's friends. Chuck's sister sang "The Battle Hymn of the Republic." Why did it have to rain on the day of the funeral? It was difficult enough at the graveside. The pastor said the usual prayers, and the bugler played taps. One by one those who loved Mark took a last walk by the coffin and sprinkled it with holy water. I was the last one to bless the coffin. As I stood there, one of the soldiers who acted as pallbearer came up to me. "Were you Mark's math teacher?" he asked. I nodded as I continued to stare at the coffin. "Mark talked about you a lot," he said. 

After the funeral, most of Mark's former classmates headed to Chuck's farmhouse for lunch. Mark's mother and father were there, obviously waiting for me. "We want to show you something," his father said, taking a wallet out of his pocket. "They found this on Mark when he was killed. We thought you might recognize it." Opening the billfold, he carefully removed two worn pieces of notebook paper that had obviously been taped, folded and refolded many times. I knew without looking that the papers were the ones on which I had listed all the good things each of Mark's classmates had said about him. "Thank you so much for doing that," Mark's mother said. "As you can see, Mark treasured it." Mark's classmates started to gather around us. Charlie smiled rather sheepishly and said, "I still have my list. I keep it in the top drawer of my desk at home." Chuck's wife said, "Chuck asked me to put his in our wedding album." "I have mine too," Marilyn said. "It's in my diary." Then Vicki, another classmate, reached into her pocketbook, took out her wallet and showed her worn and frazzled list to the group. "I carry this with me at all times," Vicki said without batting an eyelash. "I think we all saved our lists." That's when I finally sat down and cried. I cried for Mark and for all his friends who would never see him again. 

The density of people in society is so thick that we forget that life will end one day. And we don't know when that one day will be. So please, tell the people you love and care for that they are special and important. Tell them, before it is too late.

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A Beautiful Movie to Honor Teachers 

For a long time I've wanted to publish a book about how teachers made a difference in the lives of their students; because I know they made a difference in mine!

I grew up in Trenton, Tennessee, a small town of 5,000 people. I have wonderful memories of those first 18 years. And during those years there were two teachers who I can say, with certainty, helped to make me who I am today.

The first was Ms. Bridges who taught me in the 4th grade. She was amazing! I'll never forget her beautiful smile and her passion for teaching. She made learning so much fun and made all of us feel like we could do anything we wanted to do. The positive seeds she planted in my head are still growing!

Then there was Fred Culp, my history teacher in high school. To this day, he is still the funniest person I've ever met. In addition to loving his history class, he taught me that a sense of humor, especially laughing at yourself, can be one of life's greatest blessings.

So if you're a teacher, or if, like me, your life was greatly influenced by a teacher, you're going to love this movie! The beautiful poem, The Heart of a Teacher, was written by Paula Fox. The combination of words, music and photographs is a "wow" that you won't soon forget!

So to honor any teacher in your life who has made a difference, don't forget to forward this to everyone you know. Watch this movie now:

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Quotations about Learning

You can teach a student a lesson for a day; but if you can teach him to learn by creating curiosity, he will continue the learning process as long as he lives. ~Clay P. Bedford

Get over the idea that only children should spend their time in study. Be a student so long as you still have something to learn, and this will mean all your life. ~Henry L. Doherty

I am learning all the time. The tombstone will be my diploma. ~Eartha Kitt

It's what you learn after you know it all that counts. ~Attributed to Harry S Truman

A single conversation with a wise man is better than ten years of study. ~Chinese Proverb

In the spider-web of facts, many a truth is strangled. ~Paul Eldridge

When the student is ready, the master appears. ~Buddhist Proverb

Give me a fruitful error any time, full of seeds, bursting with its own corrections. You can keep your sterile truth for yourself. ~Vilfredo Pareto

It is important that students bring a certain ragamuffin, barefoot irreverence to their studies; they are not here to worship what is known, but to question it. ~Jacob Bronowski

Education consists mainly of what we have unlearned. ~Mark Twain

Man's mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

You learn something every day if you pay attention. ~Ray LeBlond

The most useful piece of learning for the uses of life is to unlearn what is untrue. ~Antisthenes

Some people will never learn anything, for this reason, because they understand everything too soon. ~Alexander Pope

Sit down before fact as a little child, be prepared to give up every conceived notion, follow humbly wherever and whatever abysses nature leads, or you will learn nothing. ~Thomas Huxley

Children have to be educated, but they have also to be left to educate themselves. ~Abbé Dimnet, Art of Thinking, 1928

I don't think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday. ~Abraham Lincoln

The ink of the scholar is more sacred than the blood of the martyr. ~Mohammed

Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere. ~Chinese Proverb

All the world is a laboratory to the inquiring mind. ~Martin H. Fischer

I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught. ~Winston Churchill

The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as we continue to live. ~Mortimer Adler

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm. ~Willa Cather

There are many things which we can afford to forget which it is yet well to learn. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

I am defeated, and know it, if I meet any human being from whom I find myself unable to learn anything. ~George Herbert Palmer

Always walk through life as if you have something new to learn and you will. ~Vernon Howard

Beware of the man who works hard to learn something, learns it, and finds himself no wiser than before. ~Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

I find four great classes of students: The dumb who stay dumb. The dumb who become wise. The wise who go dumb. The wise who remain wise. ~Martin H. Fischer

No matter how one may think himself accomplished, when he sets out to learn a new language, science, or the bicycle, he has entered a new realm as truly as if he were a child newly born into the world. ~Frances Willard, How I Learned to Ride the Bicycle

Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. ~Henry Ford

It is not hard to learn more. What is hard is to unlearn when you discover yourself wrong. ~Martin H. Fischer

Each day learn something new, and just as important, relearn something old. ~Robert Brault, www.robertbrault.com

If the past cannot teach the present and the father cannot teach the son, then history need not have bothered to go on, and the world has wasted a great deal of time. ~Russell Hoban

You have learned something. That always feels at first as if you had lost something. ~H.G. Wells

I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me. ~Dudley Field Malone

Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one's self-esteem. That is why young children, before they are aware of their own self-importance, learn so easily. ~Thomas Szasz

I am what the librarians have made me with a little assistance from a professor of Greek and a few poets. ~Bernard Keble Sandwell

Learn as much as you can while you are young, since life becomes too busy later. ~Dana Stewart Scott

His studies were pursued but never effectually overtaken. ~H.G. Wells

The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn. ~Alvin Toffler

Learning is a lifetime process, but there comes a time when we must stop adding and start updating. ~Robert Brault, www.robertbrault.com

Learning without thought is labor lost. ~Confucius

The pupil can only educate himself. Teachers are the custodians of apparatus upon which he himself must turn and twist to acquire the excellencies that distinguish the better from the poorer of God's vessels. ~Martin H. Fischer

The best of my education has come from the public library... my tuition fee is a bus fare and once in a while, five cents a day for an overdue book. You don't need to know very much to start with, if you know the way to the public library. ~Lesley Conger

The man who is too old to learn was probably always too old to learn. ~Henry S. Haskins

We learn more by looking for the answer to a question and not finding it than we do from learning the answer itself. ~Lloyd Alexander

You don't understand anything until you learn it more than one way. ~Marvin Minsky

The important thing is not so much that every child should be taught, as that every child should be given the wish to learn. ~John Lubbock

A watched child never learns. ~Robert Brault, www.robertbrault.com

Learning is like rowing upstream: not to advance is to drop back. ~Chinese Proverb

People learn something every day, and a lot of times it's that what they learned the day before was wrong. ~Bill Vaughan

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