Effective learning

What is learning?

Learning is a very complex process which cannot be defined using one simple model of explanation. Instead, it should be perceived depending on dimensions used as parameters for defining different learning methods.

Meaningful learning vs. rote one is an essential dimension for making a difference between various learning methods.

In rote learning the main feature is that a subject is learnt by heart, without establishing meaningful co-relations within the subject and between it and other elements of a pupil’s knowledge and experience. Motivation for this type of learning is poor and external a pupil learns to get a grade only.

As opposed to that, there is meaningful verbal receptive learning. Key features of this method of learning are as follows: content is presented with words, it is offered to a pupil in its final form and a process and result of learning are meaningful.

In addition to receptive learning, where a pupil does not obtain knowledge independently, there are also methods of learning where a pupil obtains knowledge independently – i.e. learning by discovery.

In that type of learning, the role of a teacher is delicate and complex, as s/he should lead a pupil to an ability to identify and clearly define an issue, ask him/herself and others relevant questions, and then the pupil gathers facts s/he needs independently and searches for solutions. Within that process of searching for and discovering solutions, a pupil develops curiosity, creativity and satisfaction with gaining new knowledge - internal motivation. For a pupil, implementing and gaining new knowledge becomes a personal need, s/he does not learn because of adults or grades. Instead, learning becomes a source of satisfaction.

Knowledge gained in that manner is more meaningful, longer lasting and more usable.

Parents should also have this approach to learning, but it is not often the case in practice, as they do not have enough time, skills and knowledge to help their children in a suitable manner (they do homework instead of them, provide them with final solutions, engage private tutors, encourage rote learning, etc.).

It is important how a family evaluates learning and whether working habits and continuity in monitoring and facilitating success in learning are developed.

One of the most efficient forms of help is the use of Brain Maps for improving success in learning.

What are Brain Maps?

It is a map which the brain can use to collect, store and use information. Those are mental maps designed upon the principle of association and functioning through a series of connections, links and associations, in the same manner as the brain functions.

When we learn to make them, they enable us to use both brain hemispheres, left – rational and right – creative.

What should parents pay attention to when a child experiences problems in learning, focus or motivation?

If a child has no organic disorder responsible for problems with attention or memory, causes lie either in inadequate facilitation by parents in developing working habits and methods of successful learning or disturbed family relations, which may also lead to failure in learning.

In that case, help of a therapist is required.

It is important to note that obstacles and problems may also be caused by disturbed relations with peers or by falling in love. Therefore, parents should watch closely changes in success and build relations of mutual honesty, openness and trust in order to gain an insight into causes of failure and react in a timely and suitable manner.

Check the video material on "Learning".