Today’s system of education mass-produces learning and yet fails to enable the individual student to achieve their great individual potential.
Enabling every student to achieve their great individual potential should be considered the Holy Grail of education. But how can this be achieved?
Enabling every student to study and learn at their own speed should be the cornerstone of the foundation of their education. And providing and using the correct format to deliver the learning content that best caters for their Preferred Learning Style is essential to that.
Expecting a child to excel using only text books when they are either a visual, auditory or kinesthetic learner, is a hindrance rather than a help
This is especially the case where a child has a specific learning need. This is demonstrated by the inordinately high number of students living with Dyslexia where a reliance on text books is self-defeating. Children and students living with reading difficulties are immediately assisted with the use of visual learning, where they then have the opportunity to learn much more effectively and demonstrate just how bright they really are.
Similarly expecting every student to excel in every subject is unrealistic. Too often over the last 10+ years have we have encountered situations where, by identifying each child’s natural skills and talents and enabling them to study those subjects or topics, we have seen them excel to standards normally associated with much older students.
Continual testing and assessment can also never be considered a true indicator of a child’s ability to learn and succeed, simply because there are those students that do not perform at their best when confronted with the stress and anxiety of having to demonstrate their abilities under time constraints.
Understanding exactly what a students greatest individual potential means, also plays a significant part. Comparing one student’s level of academic achievement with another is also problematic. One student’s capacity and ability to learn and study effectively, will always differ from subject to subject. A child that has a natural talent and skill for the Arts subjects may have a completely different level of interest and achievement when required to study Science related subjects. Similarly, a student with a natural interest in animals and Biology may not quite succeed to the same levels as their peers when studying the Social Studies subjects of History and Geography. This underlines the importance of being able to understand and appreciation each child’s natural skills and abilities from an early age.
Then of course there is ‘the magic’ that comes from having a student that is self-motivated. Tapping into that magic that motivates every student is essential in providing the infrastructure that allows them to achieve their own individual greatest potential. What do we do to develop that self-motivation?
Sadly too often we also see children and students being restricted in their learning activities because we associate one genre of information with a specific Age or Grade. Restricting a student with a natural interest in History to only learning those historical topics for his or her age, does little to foster their natural desire to learn. Here at Zane we always encourage those students we work to discover those subjects and topics for which they have a natural interest and talent, and then make the information they want to learn available to them. And when we do, it is not uncommon to see them surge ahead beyond the levels and abilities of their peers.
With the technology available to us today, there are all the resources available to provide everything each student needs to be able to achieve their greatest individual potential.