Six friends of learning

View ImageI keep six honest serving-men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and Where and Who.

Rudyard Kipling

Your assignment – compare and contrast the following answers in relation to learning:

  1. Go to fullsize imageWho?
    Me
  2. What?
    Anything I choose to
  3. Where?
    Anywhere I’m presented with the opportunity
  4. When?
    Anytime I am open to it
  5. Why?
    Because it’s interesting, it may save my life, it may help me help someone else, it may be useful, I just want to learn for the sake of it
  6. How?
    Online, meeting new people, watching other people or videos or TV, listening, trying something for myself, exploring ideas, reading books
  1. Who?
    Students
  2. What?
    Anything they are told to
  3. Where?
    Anywhere except in class
  4. When?
    Anytime except in class
  5. Why?
    Because they are told to and it’s good for them
  6. How?
    Goodness knows but usually despite the responses to questions 2 – 5

Now, next time you teach, ask your friends to join you before you start… or maybe I’m just an old cynic!

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2 responses to “Six friends of learning

  1. Great post. I asked my students a series of questions and their answers didn’t surprise me. I asked questions like “why do you learn?” and they said “to get a job…”
    I asked “how do you learn?” they said things like “by watching something I’m interested in”
    My classroom was centered around me and how and what I teach.
    Kids may not know what they want to learn or how they want to learn it, but it’s our job as a teacher to give them the opportunities to expand their learning experience.
    Great post! Simple, but powerful!

    • Thanks for your comment, Paige. It can be quite easy to forget, when reflecting on our own teaching, that we need to turn the mirror on our students, too. It’s also easy to assume that as adults we have the power to choose our mode of learning… why do we not give that to our students as well?

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