learning notes 10/9

Learning is a perpetual process; our thoughts on learning and all things should follow this same principle and therefore when we change our thoughts it does not make us hypocrites, it simply confirms we are the unique lifeforms that we are. On the contrary forming an opinion, or worse yet, another persons opinion, then sticking with that is very unintelligent and not very human. Perhaps it would even be evolutionary/biologically hypocritical.  This is why you probably will notice differing ideas over time in my posts.

I believe continually learning, trying new things, doing hands on things and experimenting in life are all extremely important.  They can have profound impacts from childhood and into life, only as a child you wont learn to understand and appreciate this until you are much older and wonder what makes you different. From childhood kids should be encouraged to ask questions and given encouraging answers by adults. From there I think observing people do complex things then letting the kid try the complex thing themselves will help them understand how to approach building things, repairing/deconstructing things, problem solving and similar skills.  For me, this started with watching people work on things such as cars, where over time I developed the ability to look at complicated problems, come up with solutions and then try those solutions to solve the problem in a loop cycle until it is completed. Fortunately, I was given a strict moral guideline as a child but within that framework I had much freedom, which I greatly credit with my learning ability.  Roaming around the woods with my friends, riding our bikes all around the town(and then some) building forts and bridges, using saws, hammers and power tools were all essential to learning. However, without the solid framework it may have been much more dangerous.

I am also glad my parents were not too concerned about me getting straight A’s and were ok with me doing well in some classes and not so well in others.  This allowed me to focus more on what I liked and less on what I didn’t and I even maintained that attitude into college. That leads me to the next part of learning education.  I have always felt school was torturous, especially in certain subjects: it is evident teachers are not very well at helping all students understand the fundamental principles they try to teach, instead some students just miss certain key elements of the subject and without a well equipped teacher they simply suffer, much like I did with math, science, music among others.  I truly believe it is in the methods of a teacher that will affect whether or not all students fully grasp the subject beyond memorization and the nonsense they try shoving down their throats. We need true learning, questioning, iterating and inspiration not simply received wisdom.

As far as college goes I haven’t much to say other than yes I went, graduated and I can’t say it has had a profound impact on my life. That is at least beyond having one memorable professor and learning how bad working in groups really can be, specifically when your forced to with less than stellar classmates. So I think I can confidently say yes, I went to college. But no, that does not make me a hypocrite when I say it is probably not the best thing for most people to go through. It would be like saying, yes I was tortured and you too must be tortured because that is what we have implemented in society.  In an ideal world with an ideal school full of ideal professors and administrators (which of course is fantasy because most people would have a different ideal) then I would say most people should dip their feet into college and see how they like it. But when it is not easy to go to a school and learn the things you have true, deep passions about then it is probably not ideal.

So go learn, encourage your children, friends and coworkers to learn too but stop to question everything, without questioning things you are not truly learning.