Inspired Learning


Kids love learning! 

 

How do you keep that love alive? How do you encourage curiosity and the pursuit of knowledge?

 

These are natural tendencies in kids and it is important for us to do what we can to nurture and protect these joys.

 

Avoid those comments about learning or school that may come from your own negative experiences. Watch those common opinions like "Everybody hates Math!"

 

Keep your attitude positive yourself and leave your child's natural enjoyment of learning intact.


Check out Best Learning Strategies that can be adapted for any age...

 

Universal Strategies

Drink water

Breathe and Relax

Focus

Move Your Body

Motivate

Know Your Strengths

Visualize

Organize

Get Involved

Take Notes

Ask Questions

Define Terms

Brainstorm

Memorize

Work Cooperatively

Use Technology

Express Learning

Reward Yourself

Create Habits!

Learning at school or at home?

 

Right now, parents are gearing up for another year of schooling, learning at school or at home. Wherever your child is learning this year, help them get enthusiastic with the right supplies.

 

 Shopping for supplies?


A lot of kids. and parents have fun picking up fresh pencils, binders and backpacks. Got your favorite places to shop?



Shop Amazon!

Amazon has some great deals!

Your kids will enjoy a batch of new supplies...


Recycle and Reuse!

And, if you still have lots of supplies left over from last year (most pencil crayon boxes aren't used up in a year!), give them a fresh start. Spend a fun afternoon with your child sharpening the pencils, cleaning up the old erasers, testing the felt pens and highlighters, and taking the filled pages from the still-good exercise books.

 

Teach your child about the pleasures of reusing for the sake of the environment.



For the adults...

 

7 Questions to keep curiosity alive

from The Mind Unleashed

  1. What is love?
  2. Where do I want to be?
  3. What happens when I die?
  4. What makes me come alive?
  5. How do I want to be remembered?
  6. Am I truly happy?
  7. What is my purpose in life?

Great Learning Strategies!

 

 These learning strategies will work for you, for every person!

 

Even young children can learn

to use these great ways to learn.

In a classroom setting, or for tutoring, or home schooling,

just choose some of these strategies to build in.

 

Like...get up every 30 minutes (10-15 minutes for young children) and stretch, and have a drink of water.

 

General Learning Strategies

Drink water.

Keep a bottle or a glass of water near you while you work.

Drink water as well as juice, etc, if other beverages are included in your breaks.

Breathe and relax.

Breathe deeply 3-4 times as you are getting ready to learn. Notice any tension in your body before you begin and release it by breathing and relaxing. Repeat when you stop for breaks. Shrug your shoulders as you engage with your work.

Focus.

Keep your attention on your learning. Choose the amount of time you believe is reasonable for a full focused attention eg 10-30 minutes. Get ready beforehand - get organized, eliminate distractions, set a timer- then work on your learning for the set amount of time. Take a short break, then focus again. Repeat until your assignment is complete or you feel like you have accomplished enough until the next time.

Move your body

Stretch or go for a brief walk before you begin. For a short break, get up and move around, do a few exercises like the cross crawl, the lunge or a few gentle neck rolls. After, engage in some movement-go to the gym, do some yoga, go for a run, dance. Think about your learning as you move. 

Motivate.

Identify why you are learning and what you will get out of it. List what that motivates you to accomplish anything in your life. What are your inspirations? Reach for your motivators on purpose to get you started, move past procrastinations and blocks, and meet your learning goals.

Know your strengths.

Identify what you are good at already. How can you apply your strengths to the learning at hand? Link up your interests and strengths to the material.

Visualize.

Close your eyes and picture what you want to learn. Use all your senses in your imagining, as well as you can. Visualize accomplishing the steps to the end result.

Organize learning.

Figure out what you have to learn, break it up into steps and make a timeline. Estimate the time it will take for each step. Make a list of materials you will need to complete your learning. Set a goal, choose your learning strategies, and plan a reward for yourself when you meet your goal.

Get involved with your learning.

Interact with your learning to increase its impact. Learning the alphabet? Create letter puppets. Memorizing capitals of states or provinces? Make flashcards and get out a map on the floor. Learning a language? Create a dialogue and get a friend to say the other part with you.

 

Take notes.

Jot down key ideas, lists, and thoughts. Use your notebook while you are learning but also at other times during the day to capture ideas as they come up. Notice thoughts that are related to your learning when you are exercising, doing mundane tasks like washing dishes, or before or after you sleep. Young children can draw pictures of what they are learning.

Ask questions.

Turn your learning into questions. How will you answer those questions? By yourself? From a book? The internet? What other resources can you use to answer your questions? Who is the best person to ask? Ask yourself which specific learning strategies you will use to learn the material. Teach young children what a question is...

Define your terms.

Define the terms you have to use to understand your material. Use dictionaries, thesauruses, reference books. Ask someone about the terms-sometimes people give effective and memorable descriptions that you will not find in a dictionary. With young children, introduce the vocabulary, like "letter sounds" or "plus", "minus".

Brainstorm and create Mind Maps.

Write down all your ideas on your learning topic, or a part of it as you begin your learning, or if you get stuck. Don’t edit, accept all ideas. Make a list of them or create a mind map, then make connections, notice categories, add color, symbols, and pictures. Use the brainstorm to organize your learning.

Memorize.

Use a memory technique to help you learn. The most effective way to remember things is to turn them into strong picture images. Then attach each to something familiar, like the rooms in your house or your body parts, or your favorite sports teams. Check the Memory Strategies that can be modified for young children.

Work cooperatively.

Accept help. Pursue help. Create a team to accomplish the learning. Choose people who work positively with you or give you support in the background to reach your goals.

Use technology.

Use computers and computer programs like iWorks, Word, Excel, create tables, add photos, insert clip art, use the internet for research, use tablets, explore interactive white boards, enjoy networks.

Evaluate your learning.

How well have you learned? How is it useful to you? Answer these questions for yourself as well as participating in the evaluations that may be set up for you, like the test to check your knowledge for a course you are taking, the marks you receive for a assignment you must do. Evaluate yourself and identify how you can use the learning as a part of your life skills.

Reward yourself.

Give yourself rewards along the way. Set up small rewards for each step you accomplish- a walk with your dog, time with a friend, a sticker chart on your fridge, a hot bath or cup of tea.

If it’s a big project, plan for a larger reward- dinner and a movie, a weekend off, a new book or an addition to a collection.

Acknowledge yourself and anyone who has helped you. Name your success and accept it.

Create habits.

Use effective strategies that become second nature to you as you begin to focus or end your learning session. Get water, stretch, use a timer, put on some 60 beats a minute music, set a short learning goal for the focus session, review the material before you put your books away, reward yourself when you are done, take a deep breath to start and finish.

 

 

Get Involved!....Create good habits immediately.

  • Choose 3-4 of these learning strategies you know will be effective, or you are willing to try.
  • Use them on purpose each time you engage with a learning topic.
  • Be consistent with them!

It takes 3 weeks to create a habit. Notice what works!

This post is from my Best Learning Strategies site!

For great info on identifying your learning style, or your child's,

check out the Universal Strategies page

on Best Learning Strategies!

  

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Two words...Khan Academy

School has begun again in many places. Here's some inspired learning help....


Have you been to Khan Academy?

If you have any concepts to learn, check out this amazing site!


"You can learn anything.

For free. For everyone. For ever. "


Several years ago, most people went on Salman Khan's site for some Math help. But he has not stopped at Math...


From the site...

"Take control of your learning by working on the skills you choose at your own pace with free online courses."


About the site...

"Khan Academy is a non profit educational organization created in 2006 by educator Salman Khan to provide "a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere." The organization produces micro lectures in the form of You Tube videos."


Its description...

"Learn for free about math, art, computer programming, economics, physics, chemistry, biology, medicine, finance, history, and more."


My daughter recommended this site to me several years ago. She was tutoring students in university level math, and Khan Academy was a help to her and her students. My students were a lot younger. But when I looked into it, I discovered that this wonderful young man, who started this academy to help a young niece with early math concepts, started at the beginning...1+1=2


And his style was so much like mine that my students felt very at home watching it. And found it fun because it was on TV. Well, computer.


We used it together as a class, and then also put it in use for small groups or individual students to preview, or review, their math concepts. AND Khan Academy added great features for students and teachers over the years-questions for the students to practice, and ways for the teacher to track the students' progress. Students learned to navigate around the site for the concepts they needed.


I recommended it to parents. Now I am recommending it to you, if you haven't already signed on.

For you, for your children, your students, your friends, nieces, nephews, mom and dad....


And this site has grown a lot! There are so many subjects now. This is a big vision!

I am so impressed by this Salman Khan...

2,238,867 subscribers today!


But look for yourself! 

Check out the site, Khan Academy. You might have to sign up now to explore. But it's free!

And watch this great little inspiring video....


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Back to school...

Back to school next Tuesday! For lots of kids...

 

In this part of the world, kids return to school after Labour Day( or Labor Day in the US).

Labour Day is a holiday, the first Monday in September.

 

This year the kids get a few extra days of summer. Most of them will be getting ready for an exciting start to a new year.Whether they love it or don't-love-it, school plays a big part in a child's life.

 

Even if a child is home-schooled, the flow of the school year is often followed-school start, school holidays, even the hours...

 

Enter into your children's anticipation of the coming year. Talk to them about it. Get their mood so you know if they are looking forward to school, and what they like. Or notice if they have worries about any part of it-new teacher, new school, new routine, different friends. Reassure them, show your confidence in them, but listen to their concerns. There might be some small thing you can do that makes a big difference.

 

Stay positive yourself so your children have a good model of thinking about school and the learning that is coming up for them.

 

It's a good time to talk about schedules, homework times,  extra-curricular activities, expectations.... Sometimes it's time for new responsibilities, or privileges, because of the ages of your children.

 

Be sure your kids have down time. School start can be stressful, or at least a busy time. Ease into the new routines. Do a few outdoor or nature activities to help your kids transition. They've been outside a lot in the hot summer weather! A camping trip by the lake in late September is fun to look forward to, or at least a fall picnic...

 

The years go by... Make the most of this time with your children!


Check out our page on Inspired Learning...resources and ideas for school and learning at home.

Or wherever you learn!

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Bob's ABC...a video

Time to focus on learning! 

School time soon here. And school has already started in some places. Or never stopped!


Here is a cute ABC video to get the littlest ones ready-for Kindergarten or Nursery.

It's also good as a refresher for your Grade one child who is still getting the hang of the alphabet names. Capitals in this video.


It's also fun to watch for your tiny tyke. Get 'em started young with colorful attention getting learning.

Easier when the time comes.


Remember to sit for a minute with your children and share...

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