“There are constant shifts and changes in time. Thus, the unwillingness to stretch or push ourselves further and learn something new (or perceive that we can’t) will ensure we’re moving backward rather than forwards…”
We all recognize that everyone is an individual, and with that means there’s also diverse ways of learning. This is a predominant reason why many students fall behind “the pack” within the traditional classroom settings. Adaption is key.
Learning is indeed a lifelong process, and therefore we constantly need to adjust our approach to progress with the times. These days “Accelerated Learning” for optimal retention of information is important so that students can absorb what is being delivered and understand how to apply this information quickly and effectively to remember more.
By definition, “Accelerated Learning” (AL) is based on the way we all naturally learn. It is designed to unlock much of our potential for learning that is often left untapped. AL actively involves the whole person, applying physical activity, creativity, music, imagery and color, to deeply engage students in their education.
Accelerated Learning is not about “rushing through” content to achieve grades faster. Rather, this pedagogy is focused on maximizing the content for optimum retention. Thus, to avoid any such misconceptions within this article, we’d also like to refer to the concept of “accelerated learning” as being optimal learning for the future.
The brain is a powerful thing. Once the keys to learning are understood, we can train our brains how to retain knowledge and insight better, whereby everything changes—from the way questions are posed, to the way information is recalled.
Through optimal learning experiences, students discover and identify the mindset required for the situations they are in, so that there is a valuable experience or takeaway from it, as opposed to simply memorizing scripted answers and reciting them through multiple-choice tests. The bottom line, students develop new skills that stick or concreted as knowledge is connected and remains with them throughout their lives.
Consolidating the Application of Knowledge
It is one thing to learn facts and rhetoric, but it is an entirely different ball game to apply knowledge in real life. Ultimately, optimal learning is an inclusive process whereby people of all ages can learn concepts and utilize essential skills, such as working together to problem-solve. We want our students to internalize the information so that they can quickly understand how to put it to use.
Supporting Each Other In Learning
An important aspect of AL is its sociality, being able to communicate thoughts and apply varied ways of thinking. In addition, this allows students to continuously refine these skills used in class in their interactions with each other.
As humans, we end up feeling static with knowledge because we’re not meant to passively absorb new ideas and information. To make the process of retention viable, optimal learning requires active engagement. Simply put, it needs to be part of our daily lives.
The greatest blockage to learning is what you think you know. Or don’t know. Fear is an interesting factor. Especially when you think you know something, and learning new information means changing your mind; it becomes easy to think there’s no room for other ideas.
Optimal learning is intended to expand the mind, life is complex and therefore we want to prevent our brains from being stuck in the same place. Overcoming our egos, and not being afraid of mistakes can be one of the big challenges of learning.
At Tutor Partners, we hope our students will embrace the concept of potential mistakes and adjust their thinking to help them learn the most. To reflect and “accelerate” for optimal understanding.
This process doesn’t overcome the need for hard work. Learning should be difficult, however, this doesn’t mean that it can’t be significantly connective too, resonating with daily life.
Effectively Spaced Repetition
Rote memorization often doesn’t work, because such pressure creates blockages. Period. (There are exceptions of course with Mathematical Algorithms). Moreover, effectively spaced repetition aligns itself with the way the brain naturally retains information, not against it.
Memory mastery arises from repeated exposure to fresh material. Overall, to learn concepts effectively and retain them, we must frequently retrieve the information from our mind’s connections. Spaced repetition involves revising information at increasing intervals. It concretes knowledge often at first, and then less often, to help concrete the learning experience by connecting it at a superior level.
“The beginning of knowledge is the discovery of something we do not understand.”
~ Frank Herbert
Tutor Partners believes, thriving in life means upholding a certain commitment to lifelong learning. Things often change rapidly, and the greatest approach anyone can take towards learning is one that helps us sleep at night.
As individuals, we are responsible for opening our minds to new pathways of knowledge. However, we need to work together. We don’t all have to share the same view, but it’s “teamwork”, engagement, significance and connectedness in optimal experiences that we must aim for. It’s up to all of us to build upon lifelong learning that resonates.
Just be, live freely.