Phases of Learning
These are the phases of learning that we grow through and gain throughout our lives.
The first of the Foundational Phases, and serves as the foundation for all the rest of a child’s life. This is when parents nurture their children in the safe, cozy atmosphere of home and family life. Core lessons include: what is right and wrong, good and bad, how to make choices, how to work and be responsible. Core phase is about building family relationships, family work, love and nurturing and learning through play! Those beginning core phase are exposed to inspiring music, good books, and an atmosphere of learning through the family culture. Academics are not yet a part of a Core Phase child’s life.This phase never ends and needs to be strengthened and nurtured throughout life. Having a strong core is crucial to experiencing healthy love of learning and scholar phases.
LOVE OF LEARNING
The Love of Learning Phase is the second of the two Foundational Phases, and it sets the stage for the child’s later scholarly pursuits. This is when a child begins to play in new ways, and this sometimes begins to look like study, but it’s not; it’s still play. If a child at this stage (or earlier) is forced into academics, what results is usually a “Hate of Learning.” This is one of the earmarks of a conveyor belt education, and why most of us schooled that way can’t fathom the idea that young adults will eventually choose to study 8-10 hours a day. If this phase is successfully nurtured, scholar phase will come naturally as a child develops. Love of learning begins when children begin to explore new ideas and become interested in everything around them. This is the asking WHY? stage. Students are excited to learn anything and everything and jump quickly from one subject to the next. If they choose it, they will be excited about it, and play will include things that sometimes do and sometimes don’t look like work: reading, writing, discussing, drawing, sculpting, building, cooking, and cleaning. The parent’s job during this phase is to keep the home stocked with “educational products,” and model to the child that learning is one of the funnest things she can possibly do.
As the student nears the end of a successful Love of Learning phase, he naturally begins to transition towards more scholarly pursuits, until he enters the Scholar Phase, the first of the more serious and grown up Educational Phases. Within Scholar Phase, there are a number of different levels built one upon another. During the scholar phase years, the student develops and changes quickly, what works for a child in the beginning of Practice Scholar will not necessarily work for the serious Self-Directed Scholar. This begins as students mature and become ready to focus longer and go deeper into their studies and development of “Scholar Skills.” They also need the support and guidance of outside mentors (not mom) and positive peer influence.
DEPTH / MISSION
This phase is more self directed. A person takes all that they have learned, seeks out their unique personal “mission” and works towards goals that will help them find their way of blessing and serving the world.
Leadership Education Basics
There are seven keys of successful leadership education, as outlined by Oliver Demille in the TJED book. Throughout history, great leaders, thinkers, and statesmen were educated utilizing these keys; when they are applied, learning occurs. When they are ignored or rejected, the quantity and quality of education decreases. Whatever the student’s individual interests or learning styles, these principles can apply.And whatever your role in education—home, public, private, higher education or corporate training—the application of any and eventually all of the 7 Keys will significantly improve your effectiveness and success. *See tjed.org
CLASSICS NOT TEXTBOOKS
Great ideas are most effectively learned directly from the greatest thinkers, historians, artists, philosophers and prophets, and their original works. Great works inspire greatness!
MENTORS NOT PROFESSORS
Mentoring is different than just standing in front of a class and presenting a lecture. A mentor finds out the student’s goals, interests, talents, weaknesses, strengths and purpose, and then helps him/her develop and carry out a plan to prepare for his/her unique mission.
SIMPLE NOT COMPLEX
Learning and mentoring is not complex. It is challenging, but not complicated. The more complex the curriculum, the more reliant the student becomes on experts.
STRUCTURE TIME NOT CONTENT
Great mentors help their students establish and follow a consistent schedule, but they don’t micromanage the content.
INSPIRE AND THEN REQUIRE
There are really only two ways to teach—you can inspire the student to voluntarily and enthusiastically choose to do the hard work necessary to get a great education, or you can attempt to require it of them.
Great teachers and schools reward quality–quality work and quality performance. In late Scholar Phase and Depth Phase, anything less than high quality is not accepted by the mentor as a completed work; instead, the student is coached on how to improve it and sent back to work on it—over and over again until excellence is achieved.
Give serious focus to your education, create an environment where curiosity is activated, learning is facilitated and excellence is modeled, and invite them along for the ride.