Linear Learning

Very often, people think that learning is a linear process. Learn a bunch of facts and you get an A. Simplifying the processes of learning seems to check off your list quicker but this reduction learning has been costly.

The world is very complex and this linear model of learning seemed to be insufficient in representing the complexity of the reality. Hence, the learning that we are training students for is failing to prepare students for the real world.

Learning is messy.

We need to start thinking about learning differently. Training students to practice expecting problems, extending and refining existing ‘facts’ and knowledge. Simply training students skills in an isolated manner would be difficult to develop them to be well-rounded individuals.

 

Not just Bad Luck

“Experience teaches nothing, but evaluated experience teaches everything”

~ John C. Maxwell

Once in a while, bad things happen to us. We might suffer. We might feel upset. But most of us would say it's just bad luck.

But when bad things happen over and over again, then it is no longer bad luck but is the result of bad thinking processes.

As Einstein has once said, 'We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.'

In order to develop better thinking, we need to rely on reflection. Reflection is not a sexy word and it certainly isn't an easy task. It is often at the bottom of our priority list as it takes time, energy, and the courage to admit that we did wrong. To admit that our judgements are after all flawed at times.

But it is a necessary process to take in order to avoid suffering again, to change and to grow.

 

 

Just Sing

Have you ever wonder when two people are having exactly the same experience, one might enjoy it so much more whilst the other completely hate it. What sort of mindset separates them? How come different people would have completely different feedback regarding the same thing.

Back in school, I joined something called the Duke of Edinburgh Award.

To obtain the Gold award, one has to complete the following sections:

I know that's a long list of activities to complete in one year. On top of that, I was probably out of my mind at the time and did not anticipate walking 80-96 kilometers over the course of a four day / three night expedition in the wilderness.

On the first day, I literally thought I was not going to survive the journey. After navigating, hiking and treading 20 kilometres of mountains and hills, with over 16 pounds worth of supply and tents, we finally arrived our first campsite, which was actually in the middle of nowhere. We didn't think much but just built our tents on somewhere that looked flat. We then cooked our own food and the water took forever to boil. Finally, you got to cramp in a small tent with three other people. As I laid down my sore, sweaty body (no shower of course), hoping for a nice rest, it turned out the piece of grass had three dried, harden cow poo on it. My back felt like it was punched after a full night's sleep.

So you get the idea. Our lives were basically just hiking, cooking and sleeping. We lived to survive. Dragging our bodies along just to get to the end.

That's one way of looking at the journey. That was the way I looked at it at the time.

But recently I have learnt something.

Singing.

Singing changes our hearts and minds. It can somehow make everything seemingly better. It allows us to enjoy the journey in a different light. An art in which to make the process a valuable experience instead of simply aiming to reach the goal or the destination.

Our lives are a bit like the Duke of Edinburgh Journey. We didn't anticipate it to be full of challenges and obstacles. We cannot make the trail shorter, or make the weather better; those are external factors. But whatever it is that you are faced with, just sing. In no time, we will arrive our destination.

Two ounces of love

The scientific method has long been used as a framework to understand the world.

This method of thinking has indeed helped many, in various sorts of areas. It starts with observation, then you spot something out, come up with a prediction which we call hypothesis. Then here comes the interesting part; one would design experiments to test the hypothesis. Sometimes, or shall I say if one is lucky, conclusions could be drawn straight away. But most of the time, we fail, modify the experiment or the hypothesis until we can finally draw conclusions.

However, this method has its flaws.

If one were to ask you 'How many meters does someone love you?' or 'Please give me ten kilograms of happiness.', you would find their requests slightly silly.

The world is constantly asking us to put a number next to everything and it is indeed tempting to quantify things around us. But certain rubrics might not be a true reflection of what you are measuring, especially if that something is somewhat unmeasurable.

Let it go

Thoughts arouse from a conversation with my sista

We all have bits of ourselves that we hope to change. It could be a bad habit, an unsatisfied relationship, an unfulfilling job.
If we work hard enough, some of them could be changed for the better.

But some are not possible to change. The past, no matter how hard we try, cannot be changed. I have yet to meet someone who can do that.

It is hard to let go of things we can't change and move on. But sometimes, we just need to let it go.

I'm still learning.