September 23, 2021
It is a fact that the mental capacity to memorize is often used as an indicator of intelligence. Although they are strongly related, working memory does not directly affect a student’s intelligence level. “Everyone is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its entire life believing it to be stupid.” This quote from Einstein makes us reflect on our method of learning and the current system of assessing a student’s abilities / skills. Everyone has a different ability or skill, and comparing an individual to someone else’s abilities can overlook the ability of the individual where they are best suited to perform. In other words, it’s better to stop being a fish trying to climb a tree and embrace water activities.
Learning is the path to intelligence and the learning method is the launching pad for a successful life. If you want to be smart, you have to learn to be smart. If you want to be good at a particular sport, you have to learn how to be good at a particular sport. And remembering is not enough. The memories of your knowledge and information should contain instructions on how to use that knowledge and information effectively and efficiently. In order to fully understand this point, let’s compare Rote learning and Experimental learning methods.
Rote learning is defined as learning by memorizing information by repeating it a certain number of times (by writing or reading). Here, information is stored in the brain without necessarily understanding it. You should be able to remember information faster the more you repeat it. The two best examples of rote learning are memorizing alphabets and numbers. Slightly more complex examples include reciting the multiplication tables or the periodic table of the elements and spelling words from memory. Rote learning improves students’ ability to recall basic facts quickly and helps develop basic knowledge about a topic. The downside to rote learning is that it can be repetitive, it is easy to lose focus, and it does not allow for a deeper understanding of a topic. Rote memorization is not considered higher level thinking or critical thinking, as students do not learn to think, analyze, or problem solve with this type of learning.
Rote learning is considered an outdated technique and is being abandoned for newer techniques such as associative learning, metacognition, and critical thinking instead of being used as a functional basis for higher levels of learning. Teachers are mostly frowned upon for “teaching from an examination point of view,” referring to standard assessment methods, and are criticized for applying rote memorization as a foundational skill. Rote learning is necessary if you want to engage in high-level thinking and advanced learning. For example, can we work on calculus or engineering math or even basic algebra, if we have to constantly remind ourselves how to multiply or find functions and operations? The same principles apply to spelling because it is still important even though we use a spell checker and word processors to fill out forms and write letters. Knowing how to spell makes writing easier and faster.
To truly engage in higher level thinking, students must first learn basic information and memorize that information so that they can refer to it later when dealing with more advanced lessons and learning. Memory is not a strong indicator of intelligence. Instead, it is linked to the interplay of environmental factors and training. It always helps to apply effective and strong relationships to foundational skills. Ultimately, rote learning plays a bigger role than most educators would recognize in today’s learning environment.
Experimental learning is an engaged learning process in which students “learn by doing” and reflecting on the experience. Experiential learning pedagogy can include hands-on lab experiences, internships, hands-on, fieldwork, case studies, research projects, and role plays.
The way you learn is the way you approach life in general. It’s also how you solve problems, make decisions, and face life’s challenges. Learning happens in any setting and continues throughout your life. The experiential learning process promotes improved performance, learning and development. Well-planned, supervised and evaluated experiential learning programs can stimulate academic research by promoting interdisciplinary learning, civic engagement, career development, cultural awareness, leadership and other professional skills and intellectual.
David Allen Kolb, an American educational theorist whose interests and publications focus on experiential learning, emphasized the experiential learning cycle, which is a process of learning by four steps applied several times in each interaction and experience, i.e. Experiment – Think – Think – Act. It is a learning process initiated by a to live, which requires reflection, examination and perspective of the experience; then abstract thought draw conclusions and conceptualize the meaning of the experience; leading to a decision to act, to engage in active experimentation, or to try what you have learned. This cycle is so natural and organic that learners engage in it without realizing that they are learning.
Learners develop preferences for how they use the learning cycle based on personality, educational specialization, professional career, culture, and coping skills. The Kolb Learning Styles Inventory (LINK) describes nine different ways of navigating the experiential learning cycle through learning styles that are experience, imagination, reflection, analysis, reflection, decision, action, initiation and balancing.
The MHRD recently presented the National Education Policy 2020 (NEP) in which reforming the current education method and aligning it more with globally accepted education standards is one of the goals. Specifically, NEP 2020 shifts the focus from the traditionally used rote learning system, which has been the norm in India, to one based on experiential learning and conceptual understanding, which would help students apply their knowledge to deal with real world situations. For many years, educators around the world have strived to convey that an experiential learning method based on rote memorization helps students achieve success in their daily lives as citizens of the world of tomorrow. .