Understanding Learning – Learning Challenge

Choice of Challenge and Setup

I had been considering an appropriate and suitably interesting, challenging and achievable learning task… I was intrigued to see that motor skills could be considered as well as more cognitive knowledge-based tasks. So I was considering a range of things when I happened to be at the hairdresser and a new junior was being assisted by a senior colleague while she washed my hair. That got me thinking…

Speaking with the senior stylist there, a L’Oreal I.D. Expert, who I happen to know is one of the top hairdressers trainers in Scotland, and an award winner, I asked what a junior hairdresser can expect to learn in their first training periods and how long such training takes. We chatted about the initial skills: hair washing; customer interaction; blow drying; colour removal; colouring; etc.

Training typically takes place on a half day when the salon is closed, and practiced on dummies, and colleagues. And then taken into the salon gradually. We chatted more and I explained about the learning challenge. I could sense an opportunity.

Rational for Choice of Learning Challenge

I think this might be a novel and fun challenge. Quite different to what I normally do. Involving interaction with different people. The Stylist thought it would be cute to have a skill where I could offer to professional blow dry my wife’s hair. When I mentioned this to my wife she said she would prefer me to get a motor skill like ironing, cooking or painting windows! She also said that it was a good job I had not been to the dentist and suggested that as a learning challenge!

A plan of action:

week 1: approval for challenge from tutor. Application to hairdresser. Practicalities. Time to look at alternative if not possible.

week 2: contingency time in case hairdressing not possible.

weeks 3-5: 3 training sessions: a) introduction to skills, hair washing, customer social skills; b) blow drying techniques or various styles; colouring.

week 6: write up and lessons learned, how to pass on the skills

week 7-8: trial passing on the skills

week 9: write up

Point of Contact:

  • Karen Temple, L’Oreal I.D. Expert
  • Jason Hall Hairdressing, 101 Colinton Road, Edinburgh, EH14 1AL
  • Tel: 0131 444 1244
  • Training sessions: Wednesday mornings


Junior Hairdresser Application

Application as a Junior Hairdresser made on 16-Sep-2011 to Karen Temple. Confirmation that this should be possible. Discussions to take place in week of 18-Sep-2011.

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