Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Born to Learn

This video is a new one in the series Born to Learn. It focuses on creativity, brain development, and teens' reactions to learning.  Check it out, and leave a comment. The animation itself is worth looking at, but what do you think about its messages about the human brain and teens' reactions to school? What takeaway message do you get from the video?


6 comments:

ColinM said...

Trying to change the traditional perception of adolescence as a "problem" to an "opportunity" is an interesting take. I'm planning to work with high schoolers so I have to believe that even though they will have grown out of the "malleable" stage of their lives when they can perhaps learn more easily, they will still have the capacity to learn. The video highlights the historical importance of risk-taking. Learning a new language in and of itself requires taking a risk, which I hope to make worthwhile in my classroom.

pab said...

I do agree with what is being said about allowing kids to express their creativity and to learn through play and exploraion, but I also think that kids need some boundaries and guidelines set for them. We need to find a meeting point where kids feel excited and motivated to learn, but still follow the rules of etiquette and appropriate behavior, especially as it relates to technology.

AWoronick said...

Wow! As a high school teacher, this video clip really gets me thinking about how I work with my students on a daily basis. So often, I think of students as not being engaged enough with the learning offered. I worry about their futures. If I, however, adjusted my teaching to help them problem-solve in learning and express their natural gifts, that engagement will naturally increase. It is so quick that we don't trust teenagers in our society. I can only imagine what a little trust (of course with proper guidance and resources to explore opportunity,) can do.

Andrea said...

Even though I work with young students and not high school age students, I found this video clip very interesting. It suggests that parents and teachers should allow children to explore when they are young so that when they are adolescents they will have a natural desire to learn. Instead of being confined to a chair and told to listen for all those years in elementary school, they would have been allowed to touch things, observe their environment and create. By the time they reached high school they would be ready to begin exploring on their own with the guidance of their teacher. I believe that one of the main reasons students in high school do not like school is because they are bored. If you think about it, we ask a lot of our students. We expect that from the age of five they will come to school for 7 hours and sit still and listen. But adolescents especially have thoughts and interests of their own. They want to know about the world but they want to find it out in their own way. I think the approach discussed in this video could be very effective if done correctly.

Jamee Freitag said...

I see this a lot in my current school. We are an expeditionary learning school, which means that we promote learning through our environment and project based learning. I really believe that this type of learning does help students expand their learning functions. Unfortunately, I already see children who have no desire to learn ANYTHING! Engagement is a huge part of expeditionary learning, and even the most interesting topics sometimes do not engage these hesitant learners. Expeditionary learning is trying to reverse this. On a side note, I can really identify with what the speaker is saying. We at times do not let students explore in order to learn. Even as a college student, I sometimes wish that we were given more opportunities to learn through experiences instead of through texts or lectures. This idea really should be acted upon.

Mary Beth Cadieux said...

"Adolescents is not a problem, it's an opportunity," is such a valuable thought. Often times at the high school level students' behaviors is look to be contained. Teachers give detentions, call home and get upset when students show energy in their classes through being off task. I thought this way too. It was not until I observed and then subsequently talked with an 11th grade social studies teacher who thought differently. She used the students energy and passion and directed them to benefit her class. When I observed her 23 students were all fired up about abortion. Some were completely in support of it, while others were appalled. It is the ability of a teenager to be (easily) impassioned. She allowed the students a chance to use that passion to debate a current issue. Not only were students then interested in what she was saying, there were also talking about it on the way to lunch, talking about it at home with their families and asking the teacher where they could find more information on the subject. This teacher did not ask the teacher to be docile and absorb the material. Rather she understood the power of adolescence and used the excitement of her students to create a fervor on learning.

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