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मंदार शिंदे
Mandar Shinde

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Learning, Fear, and Fun

When do children (want to) learn?

- It’s only when they are free from fear and feel it entertaining!

Ever noticed how kids pick up the latest movie songs with however complex lyrics? Even kids reported of low memory skills (in school) are found to be chanting movie songs or punch-lines from TV commercials. How does this happen? One, nobody tells them to remember this, hence no exam, no fear. Two, it’s entertaining, isn’t it?

What does this mean?

- This means every child is equipped with basic memory, imagination, and presentation skills. The application varies. Some might apply them academically, some artistically, some some other way. But the skills are always there. What they need from an education system is honing of these skills, learning how to apply them in life.

Does our education system do this to our kids?

- Well, that’s a question every parent, teacher, educationalist, and activist should ask him/herself.

What can a child learn?

- Anything. Literally! Anything that doesn’t frighten and does entertain. Let it be study, sport, art, even spirituality. Remember - memory, imagination, and presentation skills are there. Just remove the fear and add fun.

What about discipline?

- Yes, discipline is important. But not in a frightening way. Can there be discipline without fear? Yes! Make it entertaining. Whatever you expect the child to follow, should have a factor of fun - in the method or in the result. Discipline through fear will be thrown away once the child is (mentally/physically) strong enough to protest. Discipline through fun will sustain. And help.

Is there any scientific base to this?

- Yes, International Oraganisation for Research in Child Handling (IORICH) has conducted hundreds of experiments and surveys to prove that ‘Removal of fear’ and ‘Addition of fun’ can increase any child’s learning capacity by at least ten times. It has also proved that knowledge acquired through fear gets removed along with removal of fear. On other hand, learning through fun is repeated and strengthened every time the fun thing repeats.

Well, sorry… that was a lie!

No, not about fear and fun. Just about IORICH. Yes, there isn’t anything like IORICH. Just wanted to add an ‘International’ and ‘Research’ touch to convince. It works, right?

Okay, forget IORICH. Try it yourself. ‘Removal of fear’ and ‘Addition of fun’. Whatever you find yourself, is the best and most authentic result. Not the one that’s published in ‘International’ journals of ‘research’. After all, each child is unique. How can we apply international rules to something that is unique? We can’t, right?

So, next time before you say that your kid is not learning, ask yourself - Is what it’s learning, free from fear and full of fun? And remember, this fear and fun is from the kid’s point of view, not yours!

Children can learn anything. If you still doubt it, recall your school days, what you wanted to learn, how much you wanted to know, how far you could imagine, how big you dreamt! It’s fun, isn’t it?

- Mandar Shinde
Source: http://mangoacademy.blogspot.com/2011/11/learning-fear-and-fun.html


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