How do we develop Mindful Learning from very beginning?

People are nature learners. Since they were born, they were exposed to a society that they have not (have not been able to develop) a single idea what is what. They naturally learn from their environment through observing and mimicking. They naturally update their learning through others’ reaction they get from their own action. And while learning, they begin to ask “What is …?” A quick answer is given by their parents. Then, they begin to think “Why is …?” A simple reason is given. As they learn more and more, they begin to figure out “How is …?” Mindful learning is naturally developed through the growing-up.

I can make a bet with you that, parents are always surrounded with children’s questions and questions and questions, just like the famous book “Wonder Why”. Some of the parents are patient. They reply with considerable delicacy as they recognize their children’s cognitive level and they try to mentor their children with a fair mind. Some may not. They reply in a perfunctory manner as they don’t value the important role they are playing in nurturing their children from the very beginning. The attitudes kids have received from their parents either promote their learning, or discourage it. The learning process thus get revised (upgraded or stagnant) based on their family environment.

Without extreme cases (hopefully), parents are always the first educators to get involved in children’s learning process. Then, kids go to school for formal, basic, and higher education. It seems that people are talking more about higher education and how it can change life and society. To be honest, I take more consideration of the parental nurturing and basic education. I do not mean that higher education is not important. What I want to say is basic education is, at least, as important as higher education that should deserve more devotion. I think mindful thinking is an ability of making logical and critical thinking that can be and should be developed from the very beginning of education and it should be strengthened throughout the learning process.

Mindful learning is a process to build up one’s belief of thinking the world in a logical and critical perspective. Belief, on the other hand, is something that once established, can hardly be altered. The establishment of one’s belief is most likely based on one’s family background, personal experience, and societal culture, in which case the preliminary education makes an important role. If we don’t provide an open-minded environment for learning from the very beginning, any higher education based upon that may end up with malfunction as unexpected. If the root deepen inside is not well nourished, it still suffers, even as a tall tree.

 

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6 thoughts on “How do we develop Mindful Learning from very beginning?

  1. I really enjoyed how you connected mindful learning with growing up (through society, the environment and even parents as first educators in their child’s life). And I do agree that mindful learning and thinking should be developed at the beginning (in extreme cases unfortunately some children may not have parents that give that) but I do agree that mindful learning is a process that builds as one grows. Thank you for sharing this brings new light into my thought process of mindful learning!

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  2. I agree that parents play a crucial role in an individual’s learning. A child’s creativity can be motivated by a patient parent. However, the only thing I concern is that a child’s mindfulness is often hurted after they enter the formal education system, even though his or her parents did very well in the early stage.

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  3. I completely agree with the crucial role of parents in encouraging mindful learning. It would be ideal if every child had the fortune to have parents that have meaningful conversations with them where they can analyze and evaluate a particular topic that they are curious about and eager to better understand. I think it would also be important for the parents to not worry about knowing all the answers to their kids’ questions; they should remain honest and decide to look deeper into the subject if the situation requires it instead of dismissing their children in order to not be confronted with their own insecurity about the subject. Thank you for sharing!

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  4. Xin,
    I think your point about primary education being the more critical juncture in a child’s education than higher education is right on the money. Our K-12, some pre-K, programs are still stuck in the idea of mass education for mass production. This overemphasizes deference to power and mindless regurgitation of approved curricula rather than fostering critique and free thought. Additionally, your remarks concerning the importance of parents and the role of the home in a child’s development is illuminating. Children whose parents are not at home, or neglectful, abusive or who create an environment hostile to critical thinking do damage to the educational environment inside and outside of the classroom. Without getting too much into the muck, authoritarian parenting styles and classroom management techniques hold back innovative thinking and jealously patrol the borders of creativity.

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  5. I agree with your post. Learning is about maintaining curiosity and engagement with the world. Sometimes it seems like modern educational standards “beat” that basic curiosity out of young students, leaving them disengaged with learning as a life-long, fun process. Indulging students’ curiosity is hard work, but definitely worth it!

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  6. Some people may argue that, although parents are important to guide their kids on a right path of mindful learning, higher education plays an inevitably significant role in shaping kids’ mind and soul about the world and social life in their future. I absolutely admit. All my statements here aren’t aimed to demean the importance of higher education, but to raise people’s attention to students’ early life education, i.e., K12 education. While we spend lots of time discussing about how to promote higher education, we should also pay, if not more, at least the same attention to early primary education. In my point of view, education is a system that ranged from the parental education to the higher education. If we are expecting to get more than what we’ve devoted to the promotion of higher education, we should definitely devote to the promotion of early life education as well. Pure investment on higher education is not enough to make a really effective and efficient influence on the revolution of the education as a whole.

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