Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Teach Less; Learn More?

No, no. Teach less, you learn by accident if you are smart. You don't learn more as expected, imbibing knowledge into your mind naturally from joyful experimentations. I finally concluded that is what was going on. I cannot speak for all, but at least it is quite true for my daughter. As she prepares for her major exams end of the year, I noticed she had learnt everything the hard way - by doing badly at tests. How discouraging. It is like NatGeo Air Crash Investigation program. Good for her she has finally learned the reasons for those "crashes". It was not easy making evidence confess their roles. They don't talk. Teachers do, but they aren't talking the needful most of the time! I gotta help her. Today I figured out how to make comprehension passages yield the meanings of words for the vocab section. I was surprised I could devise a technique, but I strongly feel that her EL teacher ought to have done this or equivalent long ago. What can you learn from just passing out assignments and scoring them. It is all letting planes fly only to crash and you go and investigate why.

So we can expect a happy ending? Well if you consider learning exam smarts useful. I have spend much time teaching them how to think usefully about their work. What about their classmates who missed input from better informed parents. Unless they are extraordinarily driven to crash very often and learn the hard way on their own, they are seriously disadvantaged.

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