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Finding the Minimum Effective Dose

Tim Ferriss discusses in his book, "The 4-Hour Work Workweek" how cutting back to the "minimum effective dose" (MED) can help many optimize time and resources. Basically, learn to work smarter, not harder. The idea that working more is better doesn't always pan out the way we think it does. As an educator I am now working over full time and I have a busy home life, so MED caught my attention. I need to find ways to eliminate the extra for my sake and in doing so, I wonder if this will benefit my students. I have a feeling it will.

I was introduced to MED while reading Matt Miller's book, Ditch That Textbook. Matt takes this idea and applies it to educators. In his article, "Stop doing too much: The "minimum effective dose' for educators," Matt urges educators to '...keep a laser focus on what we want to accomplish." So, what gets in my way? What takes too much time? Is there a more efficient way to do the same task? Can I let something go? It has me thinking. I have to work smarter, but how?

Here is what I will be thinking about this fall:

1. Is there something extra I can let go of? What can I delegate to others? This may be a change for home or school.

2. What can I do with the winter sing and spring musical workload this year? This year there are multiple reasons for a larger workload than usual. Are there tech tools or people that can help me offset the workload when we near showtime?

3. How can I work smarter when it comes to instruction? Do I do too much for students? Since I see students twice a week, I try to be efficient with our time but do I omit valuable experiences for them by doing so? Is there more control I can let go that will benefit their learning?

Minimum Effective Dose is now a new obsession of mine. Changes need to be made. Working more doesn't necessarily mean it's the most efficient or effective way to work. I need to make those small shifts and by blogging and learning from others, I feel confident I can make some positives changes.

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