Learning How to Learn

We’ve previously discussed that learning is important. Learning is what makes humans human. It’s important for living a fulfilling life. Learning is living and one should live happily and healthily, and with purpose, passion and optimism. Focusing on learning on purpose helps one live a fulfilling life. Do you agree that learning is important and do you like learning?

If learning is important shouldn’t we work on how to learn so that we do it better? Do you believe that you’re a good learner? Do you want to work to become a better learner?

Most of us don’t think about how we learn or that we could learn better. We start learning from the day that we’re born when it comes naturally. We are the best learners when we’re children. As child learners we do what comes naturally. We’re inquisitive, we connect our learning to things that we already know, we learn by playing, and we practice (playing) learning. As we age we develop learning habits and practices, many that are not helpful to our learning. We also stop playing and take learning for granted. Can we recapture and restore that ability to learn?

The awareness of our ability to learn is call metacognition. Metacognition literally means knowing about knowing, which is one’s knowledge about when and how to use particular strategies for learning and problem solving.

We can improve our learning and learn how to learn better. There are multiple stages that are progressed through while improving learning. Thinking about learning and identifying the purpose for learning is the first stage of improved learning. The next stage is developing better learning habits and using proven practices to improve learning. An important learning stage can be called personalized learning. There are different types of learners with different learning styles. The most common types of learning styles are visual, auditory and kinesthetic styles. Learning can be personalized based on one’s learning style and the topic or content that is being learned. This will enable one to be a better learner by leveraging one’s unique talents and skills to learn better. The final and ultimate learning stage is the application of learning science to improve learning. Neuroscience and psychology applied to education and other fields of learning and brain research are discovering important knowledge and insights about how our brains learn and what happens when our brains learn. Developments from this research that are being applied to improve learning. This is the future of learning and likely to lead to a revolution in learning and education. This will be similar to revolution in medicines that resulted from the research in penicillin and the functioning of biological processes starting in the early 1900’s.

Focusing on becoming better learners will help us to accomplish more in our learning, to be more productive in our learning, and to increase our desire to want to learn more. The more we learn, the more we become aware of all of the new and different things that we could learn. I am constantly amazed at how much there is to learn!

Learning how to learn is possible and has many benefits. It benefits each of us individually and all of us as a whole. Learning is something that we all do our entire lives. Let’s invest more in developing this most important talent.

What do you think about investing in learning better?