Thursday, November 21, 2013

Diverting Learning

My three year old nephew goes to afternoon 'school.' I asked him one day how he was liking it.
"I like it but my friends interrupt me when I'm doing something," he frowned. "They keep interrupting me."
His sulky comment is the crux of the problem of how we divert learning from happening. We place kids in situations where they are unable to carry out their thought processes to the higher levels.
At school, we move children from subject to subject so that they have no time to sink their teeth into material they might, given peace and quiet, gain meaning from.

But it is not only at school that learning is diverted. We all do it. Our kid is in the middle of figuring out a tune on the piano, or noticing details about the way a tool is put together, or observing tadpoles wiggling about amongst the lily pads--and we are in a hurry to refocus him on what we think needs to get done. We demand that he leaves what is interesting to him at the moment and heed our perspective and enter into our concerns (which are vastly more important of course).

We do it to others, and we do it to ourselves. We are constantly being interrupted, or interrupting ourselves be in by social media distractions, multi-tasking, our families etc.
I have to admit that the week at home when our family had no phone and internet connection was  a very restful week where I was actually able to read an entire novel, go to bed earlier and actually gather my thoughts together!


Personally, I feel increasingly like less and less of what I do is done with my complete attention. I feel divided by multiple duties and expectations (my own, or those of others).

So for the next few days, I plan to make an effort to stop interrupting myself by checking Facebook, emails etc.  I plan to spend time working on stilling my chattering mind. I plan to talk less and listen and watch more. I plan to not be so available to the world.

What about you? How have you been diverting learning from happening and how are you changing that?

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

But kids also need to know that they are not the centre of the world don' they??

Nicole said...

I have been working on this too, and know that I need to take a good "technology break" and get our household back on track. Thanks for the reminder.

beatrice ekoko said...

@Nicole! You are very welcome. I understand that in the future, people will have jobs that help others learn how to manage their online consumption/activities!

beatrice ekoko said...

@ Anon-I agree. Kids need to know that they are not the centre of the world. But neither are we adults.

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