Dec 19, 2013

5th grade field trip | Learn something new

Today I was a chaperon for my daughter's field trip.  We went to the Math and Science Nucleus in Fremont.  It's a small museum of fossils and had classroom type settings to teach the children on different subjects.
As I was sitting listening to the presentations about the human skeleton, I realized how little I know about this.  Some of the names of the bones are familiar, like femur, tibia, and humerus, but the make up and other functions of the bones was all new to me.  I know I learned this when I was in school but not having a refresher course or any way to remember this information - how am I expected to recall it to mind?
This got me thinking of how do we actually learn.  Some people have great memories and can retain and recall information well.  While others tend to simply recall some things or recent things learned.  I believe I fall into the second category.  Without having a reason to recall back on the names and functions of all the bones, I simply forgot what I learned.  In my life I don't really 'need' to know all the names of the bones and their functions.  This is something I chose to let others be an expert on who need to be, like doctors and paleontologists.
Now in my adult life, I consider myself very naive to these type of things that may seem common knowledge because we learned it in school.  Without use or any repetition of this information though, it's not common knowledge to most.  Even now, just leaving the field trip, I don't recall a lot of what was just taught!  Crazy I know, but that's reality.  I don't have a strong desire to recall this information as it is not 'relevant' to my everyday life. I know my body functions each day, which I appreciate - but I do not have a desire to truly know how it functions.
This leads me to see how we learn as adults in our careers - which should be something we have a desire to truly know about, how to do it well, and how to get better at it.  Sadly, I have let myself be 'sheltered' so to speak in the amount of subjects I have allowed myself to learn to the point of truly recalling it to mind.  I know my profession well, how we design window systems to resist seismic loads, hold itself up, and keep water out.  I know a little bit about cooking, sewing, scrapbooking, and stamping - but none of this was taught in school.  I learned this by doing and repetition which I think is the best way to learn.  Not to mention I enjoy these things.
So, if you find you don't recall much that you learned back in school - don't fret.  It just means your life now has your focus on something else.  Take a moment and think about what do you know a lot about know.  It's most likely something you do everyday or something you enjoy.  Even if it's a hobby, you'll see what you like and what you don't like.  You most likely will know a lot about something you like and you probably have a lot of experience in it.  Check this out in your career too.  What do you know a lot about and what do you tend to shy away from?  This may help you identify where you need training or what your personal strengths are.  Human nature, we tend to lean more to what comes easy to us, which usually is what we are good at and will thus enjoy doing. What do you feel you are almost an expert on?  Have you learned anything new lately?  If you can be a chaperon on a field trip, take the opportunity.  It may help you recall to mind something you had forgotten and may help you have a moment of reflection as I did.  Are you smarter than a 5th grader?!  =)

Have a great day!  Learn something new!

No comments:

Post a Comment