Being a teacher educator, in the process of training the young graduates to become teachers I noticed they were often cramming the content, and doing things very methodically sometimes, and sometimes delivering the content very efficiently but appropriate methods of learning were not being applied.
In the entire process the young school students were the eventual sufferers as they were either just mute spectators or participated fully without assimilating the elements of the process.
There are two different issues involved here. I'm going to restrict myself to specific important points only. there's a lot of material available on the web, but from the teacher's point of view certain primary issues need attention.
1. Definition: Learning refers to the act, to the process, where as a result of experience, or instruction, or observation,or training, occurs a relatively permanent change in the behaviour of the learner leading to a better adjustment with his environment.
This view has been supported by many educationists and researchers esp. those working in the areas of Behaviourism, Cognitivism, Gestaltians and the Humanists and more recently those subscribing to the Information Process views.
Therefore learners, remember that any learning ought to be apparent either overtly or covertly, either physically or intellectually. It manifests itself in one's attitudes, in one's speech, in one's aptitude, in one's knowledge, in one's skills, in one's values, in one's viewpoints etc,
Secondly, the act or the process may involve an acquisition of a totally new behaviour, or a modification in it, or a deletion, or an addition into it, thereby an improvement or reinforcement to the behaviour already existing.
Third, the definition implies that the learner has to be active in the process of learning. he has to bring about whatever changes are being talked about. no one may impose the changes upon him.
Fourth, these days the Constructionist theorists say that each learner during the process of learning constructs learning according to his perceptions, experiences and viewpoints etc. therefore each one learns the same thing differently.
2. Learning is a process . To quote a very popular saying.... Do not give a man fish but teach him to fish....fits very well here.
This view has been supported by scholars and psychologists the world over.Learning is not compulsory; it is contextual. It does not happen all at once, but builds upon and is shaped by what we already know. To that end, learning may be viewed as a process, rather than a collection of factual and procedural knowledge. Learning should help a person solve problems and issues of similar nature or slightly different ones, which implies that one should be aware of the steps in solving it.viz..
- Identification of the specific nature of the issue or problem
- delineating and defining the nature of the problem & setting the goal
- identifying the obstacles or bottlenecks in reaching the goal
- recollecting past experiences of similar nature
- conjuring up of possible solutions to solve the problem
- evaluating the relevance and applicability of each one of those solutions
- by making comparisons
- by weighing the pros and cons of the solutions individually
- selecting and choosing the most effective of the solutions
- applying and confirming the validity of the solution chosen
- retreating to other solutions by turn if the first one doesn't apply very well.
- Finally attaining the goal
It is a circular process that begins with a goal and ends in the attainment of the goal, not forgetting the significant role played by Motivations within and outside of the individual learner. there are many other details in it. You might find the following website very handy. http://www.dynamicflight.com/avcfibook/learning_process/
3. Each individual is a different kind of learner possessing a different kind of intelligence and a different kind of learning style. there are eight different kinds of Intelligences (See Howard Gardner's theory of Multiple Intelligences) and at least six different kinds of learning styles---visual, tactile, auditory, global, holistic & intuitive.
Do we really incorporate these details into our teaching agenda? Or at least do we give them a consideration when planning a lesson script?
We shall dwell more upon it later... bye for now.
How does our Brain function ?
Want to know About our Brain, Learners? All the Teaching-students of Pedagogy and Psychology need to understand the basics of brain so that they would understand the functioning of it.
There's an interesting infograph that says in a nutshell how a learner's brain works. here it is...