Mar 11 2010

We often think of education & knowledge acquisition as the same thing, at least some do. But education and more importantly teaching should be about giving people the ability to think for themselves. How often do we find ourselves in a training course that was just about getting the delegates to repeat what is being said by the tutor? Is that really learning? Or just remembering a set of answer to pre-defined questions.

True learning involves asking questions that there aren’t always answers to. We shouldn’t be afraid of questions that go unanswered, that’s one of the things that makes life interesting. As a (sometimes) trainer, I find the most satisfaction when I get a question that I have never heard or thought of before and it drives the course into depths and avenues that we wouldn’t otherwise have covered.

Exploring new ideas and concepts is how creativity truly blossoms. Bloom’s taxonomy splits learning into 6 levels starting with remembering, then understanding, applying, analysing, evaluating and creating (new knowledge). It is these last 3 that I don’t think we do enough of these days. For me, learning should be as much about creating new knowledge as it is about getting people to apply what others know.

Any learning environment should not just allow, but promote a level of discussion and debate to truly engage people into the idea of thinking for themselves, not just regurgitating a predefined set of facts or theories. I’m considering setting up a collaborative learning platform around the CI/Lean topic. I’d love to get some feedback/thoughts on this & whether people would be interested in being a part of that environment. Please feel free to comment.

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