I don’t often repost other people’s blogs, but this blogger has some excellent insight into thought processes… Definitely worth sharing.
Posts Tagged ‘learning’
Tags: education, learning, processes, productivity, skills, thought processes
Tags: daily post, learning, perfection, practice, skill, talent
When I was 8 years old, I told my mom I wanted to play the piano. She would say she was never an accomplished pianist, but to me, she had an amazing talent. I’d watch her fingers fly across the keyboard and hear music, wonderful music. I wanted to be able to do that.
Mom immediately signed me up for piano lessons. Since she worked, I had to walk to the piano teacher’s house. It seemed like a very long distance, but was probably only 1/2 to 3/4 of a mile away. Back then, parents didn’t worry about children being snatched off the street by strangers.
I kept up the lessons for a few weeks, but was frustrated. The finger positioning drills, the basic scales, learning music notation… that wasn’t what I had in mind. I wanted to make music like my mother did. Some years later, I realized the problem was that I wanted to play the piano, not learn to play the piano.
There are many talents which I wish I possessed without the baby steps needed to improve. I wish I could draw and paint. I even took drawing class in college, but the result did not reveal any innate talent. It’s something I should have continued to struggle through.
Both Nerdy Girl and I are perfectionists. We have a picture in our mind’s eye of how something should be. When our efforts are less than perfect, there is frustration and disappointment.
And yet… I sew. I can make beautiful things with fabric. When someone admires the skill (remember skill is learned, talent is a gift), I tell them they can do it, but must decide from the start that the first five garments they make will never be worn in public. They are practice pieces. Ill-fitting and imperfect.
In the end, we should all do what we love. I wouldn’t call myself a talented writer, but I love to write. Does my writing improve with practice? Maybe. Maybe not. I love to sing. That I know is not one my talents, but I do it for myself. And perhaps that is the best reason to do anything, perfect or not.
Submitted to: The Daily Post http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/09/22/daily-prompt-talent/
Tags: daily post, education, excellence, learning, school, student, teacher, teaching
The word teacher may evoke fond memories or make you shudder in horror. The best teachers are people with great curiosity, interested in learning new things for themselves, and able to encourage the same in other people.
A great teacher must have imagination, able to translate the most complex information into something that makes sense to the learner. To do that, they must understand learning styles because not every learner assimilates information in the same way.
A great teacher is resourceful. Whether it’s using the internet or applying for grants or taking advantage of a cloudy sky to teach about cloud types and weather, teaching requires using every tool available to spark enthusiasm and encourage curiosity.
I remember every one of my elementary school teachers. Only one could be said to be a nightmare, the kind that would be a caricature in a teen angst movie. Sixth grade. She gave me my first F grade. Penmanship. Why? Because I’m left-handed but didn’t write with a backslant. My penmanship was perfect for a right-handed person. I was devastated.
Nerdy Girl’s third-grade teacher is a great teacher. She teaches gifted education in a public school district where money goes to those with learning disabilities, not those who are above-average learners. She recognizes individuality in her students. During quiet study time, Nerdy Girl was disruptive and talkative. The solution? Allow Nerdy Girl to have an MP3 player. Why? Because if Nerdy Girl was listening, she wasn’t talking.
I think Bill Gates would be an excellent teacher. In his book, The Road Ahead (1995), he explained binary numbers in such a way that, for the first time, it was easy for me to understand. He takes complex information and translates it into a simple idea.
I think I’m a good teacher although Nerdy Girl is sometimes amazed at the things I find interesting and worth learning about. I remember encouraging her to read. I did what my fourth-grade teacher did… I read the first chapter of a good book and then set it aside. Nerdy Girl was 6 years old and finished Charlotte’s Web in less than a day. From that day forward, she couldn’t get books fast enough.
A great teacher doesn’t have to know everything about a subject to have credibility. Sometimes, it’s okay to be willing to learn with the student. Bring the resources, the curiosity, the ability to restate concepts in other ways, and the genuine desire to know all that is worth knowing.
Submitted to: Daily Posts http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/09/21/daily-prompt-greatness/