Wednesday, January 20, 2010

FoMI, pt. 2

This morning I did another iteration of the Fundamentals of Instruction exam. [And to answer your question, I am still far FAR from getting 100%.] When I read the question: "When an instructor critiques a student, it should always be..."

Unfortunately, the online test was being difficult and wouldn't let me easily copy the choices, so I'll just jump ahead and tell you that the answer was, in effect, to conduct the critique immediately following the lesson. One of the results of that experience with my first Army flight instructor I told you about last time is that I was switched to a new one after my original instructor went on vacation.

What led to this change? Because when I didn't have his presence in the left seat (the primary flight position in a helicopter is in the right, remember?) and an instructor over there who didn't scream at me, I did great. We flew with this substitute instructor pilot for a week and I not only caught up with everyone else, I exceeded the standard for that phase of instruction.

The day my instructor got back, I was supposed to FINALLY solo (in a helo that means you fly with your stick buddy in the other seat - technically not really alone), but the winds exceeded the limits. So Screamerman instructed me to fly back to our home airfield. I picked up to a hover, departed the traffic pattern, flew back to home station, made an approach, came to a hover, taxied onto the ramp, and set the huey down in a confined space and shut 'er down - without him saying a word. I will never forget the slack jawed look my instructor gave me, and the disbelieving praise he then offered.

The next day, however, as I had been conditioned, I flinched every time I knew I had done something wrong, even though the instructor wasn't (had promised not to) yell. Too late. Flinch, quake, fumble. Fail.

So, again, Marty the stick buddy to the rescue. I was too cowardly to "give up" and demand another instructor so he went to bat for me. Again, it was the Army. Tough it out, soldier! The funny thing was, the NEW instructor I was assigned had adopted a technique of not immediately offering a critique. He would remain silent the whole flight session until we returned to the table and then say, "You were too fast on the first approach, too high on the second, didn't put enough wind correction in on the third," etc. How useless was that information? Not only did I have no recollection of these individual approaches, it also wasn't allowing me to make the corrections when I could have seen the results! I eventually soloed, which it seemed I would never do, as you can see in the photo to the left.

What a struggle. Yet I made it through and learned a lot in the process. The instructors I had in later phases were just fine, but I probably still would have been reluctant to request a change. Doing so the second time might have labeled me a "troublemaker." Don't want to make those waves... Luckily, in the civilian world, you don't have to worry about that. It's your money, take charge of your training! Get what you pay for!

What else did I learn from my flight training? Not just how to be a pilot, but also some real world applications (which I will continue to share) for some of these concepts in the test.

Except for questions like this:

Affective domain relates to

attitudes, beliefs, and values.
physical skills.

I'm not sure, but don't show this question again
I'm sure, don't show this question again

You're darn tooting, I'm not sure. What in the world does this have to do with anything?!?

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous10:06 AM

    "How useless was that information? Not only did I have no recollection of these individual approaches, it also wasn't allowing me to make the corrections when I could have seen the results!"---------------Great point! Interesting. Nice writing. Keep it up.
    Fellow 495er.