I am 78 and still learning. Doing so keeps me eager to get up each morning and see what awaits. That despite creaks, aches, and growing deafness.
Eagerness to learn is a blessing, Curiosity may have killed the cat, but killing curiosity kills eagerness to learn. Sad. Moreover, schools kill eagerness to learn for far too many.
I loved to watch the line of first graders on the first day of school. All except a few shy ones wear happy faces and are eager to enter the halls of learning. Contrast that to drop out rates of teens. Those reflect the educational system’s failure to keep students eager to learn.
Not that the schools carry all the blame. Other factors play a part. Here are my thoughts about what kept me a lifelong learner.
1, My parents emphasized trying over outcomes.
2, My mother branded my brain with the words “Nothing ventured nothing gained.
3, I am a bit brighter than the average bear as the saying goes. Not politically correct, but a fact of life that promotes school success and love of learning. Note the words “in some” and think about this. There are many types of brightness. My talent lay in verbal skills.
Howard Gardner, the guru of multiple intelligence, notes these types of intelligence: linguistic or word smart, logical or mathematical smart; musical, spatial or picture smart, kinesthetic, or body smart; interpersonal or people smart, intrapersonal or self-awareness smart , and naturalistic or nature smart.
There are also two additional intelligences, Gardiner has identified: existential or the capacity to tackle deep questions about human existence, such as the meaning of life, why do we die, and how did we get here; and pedagogical intelligence, the ability to teach
Gardener recently claimed he was no longer in the business of identify more indulgences and was leaving that up to the next generation of researchers.
We all have more or less of each type of intelligence.. Some of us can do math; some cannot. I cannot. I have a learning disability called Dyscalculia or Math Dsylexia. I cannot do the simplest addition or subtraction because the numbers jump off the page or reverse; moreover, I cannot remember number facts. But I can do logic. Probably explains why I got A;s in Algebra, but Cs and Ds in all other math courses.
4. I was blessed with teachers who saw my intelligence and built on it and not on my weaknesses.
- My two learning disabilities (besides dyscalulia I have dysgraphia which involves problems with writing, grammar and spelling) kept me uncertain and also humble. Why is uncertainty good?
Jerome Kagan, guru for understanding people, notes that the desire to overcome uncertainty motivates us almost as much as the need for food or the desire to have sex. He also notes uncertainty can push us to keep going or to get rid of it by blaming others or ourselves or just not trying.
I was bright enough to have success in many areas, but despair overcame me in terms of math.
Why is humbleness good? For me it meant knowing, I did not know all the answers and had to look to others instead of relying only on my own knowledge or beliefs.
So what Emotional Fitness Training Tips to I have to improve your lifelong ability to keep learning. They are summed up in this poster coach.
In addition to all offered above, these tips help parent’s keep love of learning in their children.
Parenting Tip One: Find your child’s strengths and support them.
Parenting Tip Two: Make it clear every one has both strengths and weakness.
Parenting Tip Three:Allow as much free play time as you can manage particularly for the pre-schooler.
Parenting Tip Four: Be alert to your child’s learning style. I learn with a gentle distraction in the background, I learn best by reading. If I am listening to a lecture, I most take note. One of my sons learns best by listening without taking notes. This link takes you to a good article about learning styles.
Parenting Tip Five: If your child starts resisting school, think of two possibilities – bullying or a learning disability.
Parenting Tip Six: Develop your and your child’s self soothing skills. Buy my eBook. Self-Soothing to Create Calm in Your Life. The exercises in the book will relax you more than a latte and cost less.
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Thank you and work at staying strong until next time,. I work hard to do the same as life is often difficult, but exercises like this one lets me find the good.
This post was not inspired by this WordPress Daily Prompt but pertains to it: Lazy Learners -Is there something you’ve always wanted to learn but haven’t gotten around to? What is it and what’s stopping you from mastering the skill? Thanks for the prompt suggestion, BasicallyBeyondBasic!
LINKS OF INTEREST
These links are for those not familiar with Emotional Intelligence or the idea of Emotional Fitness.
Easy Emotional Fitness Exercises (www.emotionalfitnesstraining.com
The five components of Emotional Intelligence (www.sonoma.edu)Emotional Intelligence (en.wikipedia.org)
An Emotional Fitness Program for Parents(amazon.com)