A child’s educational journey is a marathon, not a sprint. In fact, it isn’t even confined to the window between when they learn their ABC’s to the day they throw a mortarboard in the air. Learning is a lifelong journey.
However, in modern society and educational systems, learning has become synonymous with education alone. Forcing learning in to the confines of an educational system means that it’s fairly easy to learn purely because of an extrinsic motivator: assessments and exams.
Whilst this is often seen as important for academic and career success, it poses some difficulties. With learning being a marathon, not a sprint, maintaining motivation for learning due to extrinsic factors only is immensely hard in the long run. It also removes much of the pleasure and fulfilment to be gained from intrinsically driven learning.
In short, doing well (or learning) simply with the goal of reaching the next level isn’t inspiring, or motivating in the long run.
What’s particularly key is that becoming an intrinsically motivated learner from the very beginning, in the Early Years, has the ability to set the tone for the rest of an individual’s life. The most adept, fulfilled and successful learners are those who are intrinsically motivated from the very beginning.
Life is a series of problems to be solved. We don’t mean this in a doom and gloom way, rather that our daily lives are a series of multiple small challenges which we automatically solve using our refined problem solving skills.
In fact, our ability to problem solve is so automatic that we don’t even think about it. Just today you’ve likely made a myriad of problem-solving decisions from what to wear, how to prepare for a meeting, to how to cajole your pre-schooler in to eating their five-a-day.
But here’s the thing: children don’t yet possess these same problem-solving abilities. They aren’t inbuilt. They have to be learned. This is particularly true for pre-schoolers. (more…)
The complete immersion learning method is the only truly effective language learning method. Learning to think and experience the world automatically, without conscious thought, is the gift given by complete immersion and gives children the tools to ultimately become fluent. We look at why the complete immersion method is so central, and how you can embark on this.
If you learned a second language at school, what can you remember? Chances are, if you embarked on learning a foreign language, like many at late primary or early secondary age, and haven’t gone on to use that language regularly, you’ve lost it. The benefits were limited to the language itself, for the time you could recall it.
That means that attempting to compare it with learning as a young child, in the early years, is akin to comparing apples and oranges: they are completely different. A young child’s brain learns language completely differently. This chasm of difference widens when we realise that early years’ language acquisition is a completely different kettle of learning experience in terms of the additional development it fosters. (more…)