While researching different theories on how the brain works, and individuals grasp information best, I tend to favor the constructivism theory. Somewhat based on the old saying “don’t reinvent the wheel” it is important to build upon the prior knowledge that students have, which helps them to have a better understanding of what they are learning. In addition it helps them to master the information and concepts better. I also have found that when students have a little understanding of what they are learning beforehand it helps them understand the material better, as well as take a little more ownership over what they are learning.
For more information on the constructivism theory: http://www.learning-theories.com/constructivism.html
One of the hardest things that I had to learn basically over night, was how to care for my baby. I am an only child, and all of my cousins and other relatives are basically close in age. So when I gave birth to my son last September it was an immediate learning experience. Yes, I went to classes, and read every book, from sleep training to breast feeding, and everything in between. Additionally I had been a nanny in high school and college, but it is different for sure! Nothing prepares you for the minute the nurse walks in your room after 55 hours of labor and says “I think someone is hungry!” I laughed in the midst of my sleepy state and said to the nurse that she must have the wrong room because I didn’t have a baby! Well, sure enough I did, and a year later through lots of blood swet and tears, we have managed to figure it out. The books helped, but in the middle of the night or in the middle of a crying fit you just figure it out. The need for visual and hands on application of having the newborn to care for is what triggered the instant learning or at least the instant need to try and try again until you can meet the need of this individual that wants something and you can’t figure it out!
Dr. Tae talked about the various failed attempts at learning how to do his 360 trick. He also mentioned the fact that everyone learns at a different pace. It is important that we as educators especially remember that learning happens at different speeds for different individuals. Some things with motherhood obviously I had to learn overnight, or in the moment.
Dr. Tae. (2011). Can skateboarding save our schools? Retrieved from http://drtae.org/can-skateboarding-save-our-schools/.