The 3-Try Method

Each overarching skill should be broken down into achievable incremental steps. It is the responsibility of the provider to ensure that participants see success in independently executing each requested skill within three tries or less. If the skill requires more than three attempts an instructor should further break down the skill including more incremental steps to the process until the desired successful outcome is guaranteed within the necessary attempt margin. This objectively ensures the atmosphere of achievement that Groove participants and families have come to expect and appreciate about our model.

Developmental Model

Current research indicates that child development generally tends to follow a fairly standard order, with the timing of those milestones being the more variable factor from child to child. Observing and analyzing this over-all process tends to lend insight to where a child may both see more “effortless” success and require more attention and practice, and in turn then inform the observer additional understanding into how a child learns best. When these qualities are factored into the educational approach properly, the result can be a seemingly “natural” capability. In other words, when you play to a child’s strengths, both focusing on what motivates them as well as considering their individual learning style, this offers a good baseline to consider how to best see success. The other element to the developmental approach is understanding the ingredients to successful independent performance of a functional skill. Each functional skill requires a competency in a subset of precursory developmental skills. Groove works with its instructors to better understand and analyze what those skills are and how to foster them to ensure ideal success with each client. 

Precursory Skill Analysis

Before performing any specialized skill, it is vital to ensure that the participant has mastered all necessary precursory developmental skill-sets. If a developmental milestone has not been reached, a child must develop that skill-set before the ultimate goal can be achieved. It is the responsibility of the provider to be knowledgeable about what developmentally is required for mastery in the discipline they are instructing, and how to spot and foster growth in underdeveloped precursory skills.

Non-Stigmatizing Skill Pursuit

In order to preserve and foster a positive connotation and avoid negative experiences with that activity, precursory skill development should primarily happen in environments that do not feel directly related to the over-all activity. Not only does this diversify the over-all experience and combat against monotony of repetition, it also ensures that engagement in the actual goal always feels achievable, easy, and fun. Then the discipline becomes more recreational in nature and less mentally, emotionally, and academically taxing.

Independent Execution

Groove prioritizes the perception of true success through independent performance. We encourage our instructors to explore creative and interesting ways to help each participant gain a natural and legitimate independence when engaging in the activity, through the strategic planning of activities of appropriate challenge.If an instructor must intervene, strategies that employ verbal assistance or visual/auditory demonstration are preferred over hands-on physical assistance. Though sometimes a hands on approach may be necessary or even more productive or advantageous, our instructors use their best judgement to determine first that other methods will be ineffective. Groove prefers an adaptive approach over an assisted approach to participation.

Emphasis on Personal Motivation

Our goal at Groove is to capitalize on the motivations and passions of each participant, and use those opportunities to help grow, expand, and develop new skill-sets inspired by pre-existing interests. Our instructors take care to meet each participant where they are at developmentally, socially, emotionally, and academically, and find common ground to build trust and rapport. We then choose to carefully and strategically attend to the subtle cues that each participant offers to tailor our instruction to each individual. If a participant is motivated, learning can be a pleasant and confidence-boosting experience, but if learning is forced, the over-all activity can become stigmatized. Some skills may feel difficult to learn, but it is up the the instructor to help make the skill as achievable as possible. Groove does not view perseverance as a skill to be acquired, but as a natural byproduct of motivation. If the motivation is strong enough, the difficulty will not surmount the drive to keep moving ahead.