As soon as we start to learn we begin building our own learning map. This is a type of landscape that we create and defines what we believe we can and cannot learn.
We can build rail, roads, canals and rivers that represent ways to learn offering us different ways of travelling or learning.
For example roads we have an affinity for and travel or learn easily can become our learning motorways and represent our strengths. We learn easy when on this route.
Travelling or learning by using B roads are more of a challenge and we may even get lost as we pick our way through unfamiliar landscapes. We need to find learning strategies to help us make progress.
Hills may act as barriers to our learning or as vantage points to see the way ahead.
Mountains may represents our limits but remember people tunnel through mountains.
Discovering that we instinctively place our learning road signs according to our emotional responses to learning is empowering.
We define learning dead ends, no entry subjects, warnings of struggles to learn and many more areas by the signs we erect on our learning map.
Realising that we can see them either as limiting or empowering signs affects our learning outcomes. Here are some examples.
You must not exceed expectations. Standards may vary with some teachers expecting more than others. Expectations are not necessarily the same as targets though.
You are not restricted in what you learn by the lesson or teacher. You can use your own time and initiative to support your learning.
Although there is a target it is only a guide to the amount of time you should allocate to this task. You can break the limit.
Maximum target or mark that you should achieve or work towards. Once you reach this level do no more.
Do not try or attempt this subject or piece of work. Wait for somebody else to go first or give you the answer or do it for you.
This is an opportunity to reflect on prior learning and to make sure you have understood the topic. Check your attitude at the door, proceed no further unless/until you are ready to flow
No mistakes or going back allowed. You must carry on regardless of what you have achieved or understood.
Making mistakes is okay. Although you may not be able to make a U turn at the moment you can find ways of starting again and learning from your mistakes.
Give way to others. This may mean the teacher or others who are confident or appear to know what they are doing. Even if you do not understand you should try to complete any tasks you have been set regardless.
Although others may be in a position to control what you do you must make sure you understand what is required of you before you proceed. Learn to question and get clarification even if you have to give way or give priority to the requests of others
Unfamiliar learning situation. Take care and proceed with caution.
Take care not to miss learning opportunities even if the lesson is easy. Keep your eyes open for new things to learn.
You can coast this topic there is not much of a challenge.
A difficult learning challenge ahead. Go back or go no further because it is too difficult.
Learning challenge ahead. If you believe you can make it you will. You have overcome other challenges like this.
Something new up ahead. Remember you can learn a great deal from facing new challenges. Think and plan and you will be okay.
Get ready to do what others want of you. This may mean learning in a way that you find difficult.
A challenge ahead. Listen to others but be ready to explain what you need and why.
Learning focus ahead. Be prepared for a lack of flexibility or limiting approaches to learning.
Although you may have to limit your range of learning activities chose the ones that best suit the challenge ahead. Use the focus to save time you could then spend on other things.
Question and answer session ahead. Worried about getting things wrong.
An opportunity to explore ideas and discover level of understanding by asking and answering questions about the topic.
Do not start down this road, it leads no where. I have been here before and failed so best to avoid. This is something I can not learn.
Last time I studied this topic I did not find the right approach or resource to help me learn. Perhaps I should look for alternative ways to learn or a way around the block.
Copyright Advocating Creativity Ltd 2015