Thursday, May 8, 2014

Asian students excel by respect of teachers and hard work, which includes rotary learning.

Elementary School in Chittoor, AP, India By Sandeep.jgupta

International student tests and education data regularly find great success for some Asian countries, particularly South Korea, Japan, Singapore, and Hong Kong in China (in their respected ranking order).

The results probably reflect the importance of a culture, where education is prized and valued. Investing great trust in the teachers gives them confidence, so they tend to live up to this ideal; the respectful attitude toward school and schoolwork also influences the children. In such an atmosphere a simple, goal-oriented focus to complete homework and absorb the material is imparted. The western idea that respects the rights of children inspires the most efficient learning, but only if the child is highly motivated. Motivated students, who invest a positive attitude in their school work, find learning pleasurable and highly efficient. This presupposes a competitive, challenging environment, which is unfortunately shunned in most developed countries to avoid discouraging some children. This places the responsibility for the motivation for learning on the shoulders of an immature child. Over the long run, it cannot deliver good results, because children do not know what their long-term interests are.

There is also an emotional side to the school environment. Emotional experiences significantly impact mental focus. Also, negative or sensational emotional experiences are remembered even better than less vibrant positive ones. Where sensational, violent events compete for students' attention in school, the focus on guns, money sidelines education.

Children, as adults learn best when they actively discover concepts for themselves. Rote learning is viewed as an old-fashioned, shallow learning method, which has no place within the contemporary school. However, acquiring basic concepts is essential. It is impossible to think about abstract concepts, when the basic understanding, rules or simple arithmetic relationships are lacking. Rotary learning, which is so prevalent in Asian countries, enhances mental capital by turning basic concepts into automatic skills. Also, rote learning is a form of meditation, which, as practitioners of meditation know improves mood and imparts patience, emotional stability. In support of this, some recent studies in psychology show the importance of emotion in memorization. Csikszentmihalyi has demonstrated that acquiring psychological capital by learning imbues long-term happiness and even well-being.

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