How Do We Learn? Do we ever stop learning? The learning process, personal thoughts & a poem
The Learning Process
Who learns? We all do. Be it at school, at home, out and about, from our parents, grandparents, teachers, friends, children, grandchildren; we are all learning all the time.
Going to school is not always a pleasant experience; we can't learn if we're under stress for one reason or another. We learn when we are interested, motivated, keen, excited, moved, involved. We learn when we want to!
Lottery for Best Teachers
If we're lucky we have teachers who
- explore with us,
- allow us to ask questions and follow them up.
It's a lottery whether we have teachers like that or teachers who just dish out the facts, have no passion, aren't interested in their students and don't really want to teach! Why are they there? It doesn't do them any good and it certainly is not beneficial to the students. Unfortunately, bad teachers are notoriously difficult to get rid of.
I know that the subjects I enjoyed and was good at (still am!) were the ones where the teachers were experts, fun, established a good rapport with us, knew how to impart information and inspire learning. They had a passion for their own subjects.
Each Person is Different - All Should be Valued
It seems that now everyone should be able to go to university. It is my opinion that university is for the academics. There is nothing wrong with not having a high academic standard; some people have a flair for practicality such as carpenters and designers, some are brilliant entrepreneurs or natural instructors and teachers. People's strengths, whatever they are, should be celebrated without being compared to the so-called 'high flyers'.
I often ask a question during such discussions; 'Who will survive when there is a disaster, when the computers go down, when we need to mend, construct, survive in a hostile environment?' It will be the builders, the carpenters, the artisans, the plumbers and the like. I admire those who are clever with their hands and know how to mend a piece of machinery; they are the ones we go to when we need help.
Challenges for Teacher & Pupil
As a teacher, my years in school (both primary and secondary) have taught me that I know very little. My students present me with different challenges; I respond, sometimes with success, sometimes with failure. However, even the failures mean that I try again to overcome that challenge, to give that student another avenue to grasp the knowledge, to understand the problem, to overcome a difficulty.
Mostly, the outcome is good but not always thanks to me; often it's thanks to the perseverance of the student, sheer doggedness to make it work, to get there, to beat the difficulties. That teaches me a great deal; I learn how to approach things better or in a different way, I learn from others how to face life and I learn how plucky they are and how worthy of admiration. The teacher must be able to learn.
Lessons of Life
Life's experience is the best teacher of all. 'We live and learn' is a cliché but it's true. At least, it should be. Not everyone does it, though. There are those who don't see what's around them, don't take notice of others' abilities, feelings and needs; those who, in the end, lose out because their lives are not made all the richer for being able to learn from others.
We learn not only from our education system. If we are open to people and events around us, we learn every day.
We can learn from
- our immediate and extended families,
- our friends,
- strangers on the street who offer unexpected help or cheer,
- reading about others' lives,
- all sorts of information available in the media....
...the list goes on.
Look around you, today and every day and see what you can learn. Then, and this is the important part, put that learning to good use, pass it on. The butterfly effect can change the world!
Teacher or Learner?
Who goes to learn?
Children to school,
Students to college,
University - cool!
must seek and find
the way things work,
Who wants to learn
apart from those?
A mum, a dad,
someone who throws
all that they have
to strive to gain
a better brain.
A teacher too
must pupils read,
know when to listen,
when to heed.
have a lot to learn
but much to offer
Who or what has taught you the most valuable things?
© 2012 Ann Carr