The Science of Good Teaching
Posted on 2017/09/09 09:09
Benjamin Franklin apparently said. "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn." But what do we REALLY know about effective learning hundred years later?Read More »
Posted on 2017/09/09 08:09
Why are some kids sad? What makes the wind blow? How do birds fly? Our world is full of curious phenomena. To find answers or solve problems, we can use a process, which was first acknowledged by the scientist and philosopher Ibn al-Haytham, in the 11th century. Also known as Alhazen, he is considered to be the father of optics - and the scientific method.Read More »
Posted on 2017/09/09 08:09
Design Thinking is a 5-step process to come up with meaningful ideas that solve real problems for a particular group of people. The process is taught in top design and business schools around the world. It has brought many businesses lots of happy customers and helped entrepreneurs from all around the world, to solve problems with innovative new solutions.Read More »
Posted on 2017/07/04 14:07
The memory palace is a technique to remember facts, numbers or other things, like a shopping list. It has been around since Ancient times and is also known as the Method of Loci. Memory Champion Marwin Wallonius used it to remember, in just 30 minutes , the correct order of 5040 binary digits or a complete deck of 52 cards in just 33 seconds. Here is how it works.
Close your eyes and imagine some sort of familiar physical space, like your house, school or office, and then add a mental image of the thing you want to remember. To remember a bunch of things you can use different rooms and visualize how you would walk through that space following the same specific route. As you walk through, place the things you want to remember at specific locations. Ideally, imagining things in a funny or crazy way, also helps to remember. Once we have placed all items that we want to remember our memory palace is complete.
The day we return to our palace and want to remember what's inside it, we have to go back in. We have to concentrate and imagine opening the door and walking our route. Once we pass by the specific location that we used to place our things , the item will pop back into our mind Let's try to remember 7 ingredients to make some pancakes.
- You open the door and see a full cup of flour next to some shoes. Strange.
- You walk into the bedroom. Inside your bed, sleeps a teaspoonful of baking powder.
- In the living room sits a massive egg watching TV.
- And on top of the TV is a cup of milk, almost full.
- You go to into the kitchen and see 6 teaspoons dancing around a bottle of vegetable oil.
- Enough. You leave the house and enter the garden. But it's full of sugar canes and in the middle, a teaspoon dressed like a gardener. What going on?
- You turn around to check the bathroom. The only thing left is half a teaspoon and salt.
Now try yourself! Close your eyes and think of a familiar place such as your home. We will now slowly list 7 numbers. As you walk through your space, place each one in a different location. Lets go: 3, 14, 1, 5, 9, 2, 6
Done. Now open your eyes and revisit your palace. Then write in the comments below what you can remember. By the way. If you want to memorize Pi or something else for a longer time, forget this technique, turn off your screen and start! Nothing beats learning by doing.
Posted on 2017/07/04 14:07
Public Speaking is a skill useful in school at work. and if we want to convince a group of people. Investor Warren Buffett called it the most important skill we can learn to advance in a career. Here a short sprouts guide to master the most powerful weapon if we want to bring change to the world.
The Issue Take an issue you really care about. When you study it, you are intrinsically motivated to learn it deeper and put in the extra effort. . Later it gives you the passion you need to inspire your audience. When we speak in public, passion is probably our most powerful force. It shines through our eyes and straight into the hearts of the audience.
One Simple Message Every issue has many angles to which we can highlight. But the audience has a limited attention span and many others issues in life, so if we say too much, they will lose interest. To make a message stick, Chris Anderson recommends to boil it down to one idea that is worth spreading. A speech is good if it plants one creative seed in the heads of the audience. A seed can then grow into a sprout, which can change lives and be shared with others.
Structure Over 2000 years ago, the Greek philosopher Aristotle established 3 simple rules to any good speech:
- Establish credibility: Ethos
- Give good arguments: Logos
- Conveying emotions: Pathos
But you can also tell a personal story or present a problem and then offer a solution.
Get Help A good method is using note cards. You can use one card per argument and keep the deck in your hands, alternating them as you speak. Politicians often read their speech from a teleprompter. Professionals often sell their ideas with the help of slides . When you have a product to show, demonstrate it. If you try to memorize your speech and you have one hour, spend 20 minutes studying and 40 minutes practicing to recite it. That’s usually the best ratio.
Speak Their Language It doesn’t matter what we say, it matters what they hear. According to Nerdwriter, Donald Trump speaks in a way that any fourth-grader can understand him. Guy Kawasaki recommends to use what he calls salient points. People don’t want to know how large a battery is. They want to know how long they can use it. When you prepare, ask yourself, how does my issue matter to this particular audience?
Practise Before you present, practice your delivery. It’s important that we stand upright, arms open, palms out. We should speak loud and clear, and make eye contact with our audience. One way to practice. Try to speak in front of friends who don’t know the topic. Then you will see if they get your point But you can also record and watch yourself on video.
Check Your Stage How big is the room, how many people will listen, will you need a microphone? Professionals will want to walk onto the stage diagonal from the left back, apparently it's the most dynamic way make an entrance. Also, always have a glass of water next to you, so you can take a sip whenever you’re losing it.
Don't be Afraid Everybody can experience speech anxiety, also known as Glossophobia. It's natural and sometimes actually helps us to reach excellence. Mahatma Gandhi called it “the awful strain of public speaking”. It prevented him for years from speaking up even at friendly dinner parties. But in 1942, Gandhi convinced 60,000 people with his Quit India Speech to join a peaceful revolt against British colonialism. He spoke up, the people followed his words and the British left .
Open For Sympathy When you enter the limelight, wait until you have everyone's full attention Then open to win sympathy, also called captatio benevolentiae. One way to do that is to excuse yourself. You can say: “you are a smart audience, so I don’t really know what I can still tell you...” Obama, opened his 2008 speech in Berlin with the words: “I have to admit that I have developed a special place in my heart for the German people”. And they loved it.
Build Curiosity Once they like you, grab their attention by building curiosity. Present a fact, statistics or a study. Or start in the middle of a story: “On my 5 birthday, my father started crying. It was the day he lost his job.” Dananjaya Hettiarachchi, a champion of public speaking, asked “raise your hand if you have an emotional mother?” and everyone did (4.2]. But you can also do something funny or open with a crazy stunt.
Deliver Your Message Now make your arguments, share those personal stories and deliver metaphors which create images in the minds of your audience. If you forget what you wanted to say, don’t worry. Nobody knows what you meant to say. In 1963 Martin Luther King gave a speech in Washington. In the middle of it he stopped reading from script and started to improvise. He delivered one of the greatest speech of the twentieth-century - “I have a dream”.
Close After you are done, summarise your arguments or repeat the core message. But you can also leave them with a quote, share your dream of a new future, or close your speech like we close our videos, with a specific call for action. Here it comes!
Write a speech about an important issue, such as education. Open with sympathy, build curiosity, and then bring in your convincing argument . In the end, close it cleverly. Limit your speech to 200 words and post it in the comments below. If you want to learn public speaking, you should also practice your speech. For example, the next 5 days, 15 minutes each. Ideally, record yourself on your phone, so you can track your progress and learn from your mistakes. Upload the last try of each day onto Youtube and share the link in the comments. Then we can see how you progressed and applaud you for trying, failing and doing.
Posted on 2017/07/04 14:07
Deliberate practice is a mindful and highly structured form of learning by doing. It’s a process of continued experimentation to first achieve mastery and eventually full automaticity of a specific skill . A 2014 study published in Psychological Science argues that it can increase our performance by 26% in games, 21% in music and 18% in sports. Here are some tips on how to do it well.
Define Success and Drill Deliberately Define all the elements you need to practice to become successful. Then drill each element deliberately, one after the other. In Tennis, that could be first your serves and then later your leg work. If you want to become a professional barista, first perfect your moves to make the espresso, then your skills to serve the ideal coffee.
Plan, Reflect and Take Notes Plan out your practice routine, for example in a notebook. After each session, reflect and write down what you've discovered: what worked? What didn’t? The idea is to get a clear sense of how a particular session improves your skills and then to experiment to find new and ever better way to achieve your goals.
Go Slow To build a good foundation of muscle memory, practice slow and correctly. If we move too fast, we risk learning and internalizing the wrong skills, which can bring terrible consequences. To achieve mastery, our brain needs time to develop. So start slow and then gradually increase the speed until you give all you've got .
Limit Your Sessions to Focus Deliberate practice is hard metal work. Limit the sessions to a reasonable duration that allows you to stay focused. This may be 15 minutes if you are younger and 60 minutes if you are older. A Cristiano Ronaldo trains around 3-4 hours of football a day. Young Shaolin Monks practice 2 hours in the morning and two hours in the afternoon, To keep their attention high, they switch the style of practice every 10 minutes.
Maximize Practice Time Legendary basketball coach John Wooden used to let each of his players practice putting on socks and shoes so that they learn to do it really fast. By doing this, he maximized the time to practice throwing the ball and discussing game strategy with his team.
Track Small Intervals of Improvement If you practice running 800 meters, count the milliseconds not the minutes. If you are working out or practice controlling your diet, measure milligrams and millimeters. The smaller the data points you measure, the faster you see progress and the more you feel motivated to continue.
Emulate Practice, Not Performance The top performance we see on screens or on stage is the results of endless hard work behind the curtain. If you want to become as good as Pavarotti in the Opera or as skillful as Messi with the ball, don’t watch them perform, study how they practice.
Repetition Makes Perfect In the 1990s, a team of German psychologists revealed that it takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to become a professional violinist. A similar study concluded it also takes almost just as long to become a great cigar maker. New workers in a cuban cigar factory take around 25 seconds to make one cigar. After 100,000 repetitions, it takes them just 15 seconds and after 1 million only 8. To reach peak performance, it takes 7 years and 10 million repetitions of the same hand movements. Not practice, but repetition makes perfect. Professional football teams therefore play daily what the Spanish players call "Rondo". Piano players warm-up with Scales and Arpeggios.
Routine Is Everything To reach mastery, Young Shaolin Monks get up at 5:30AM. Then chant, eat breakfast and practice two hours of kung fu. At 11:30 they have a vegetarian lunch with no liquids to aid digestion. At around 3PM, they practice another two hours. At 5:30 is dinner, followed by chanting. At 8 meditation. At 10 time for bed. Us normal people can start with 15 Minutes every day and then slowly increase our session.
Get a Coach The job of a coach is to show us our true potential and then guide us in the right direction. If you don’t have a coach, look for one. It can a teacher, a friend or even someone you find or follow online. For our favorite teachers and coaches, visit our sprouts channel page and check out our playlists.
The Dalai Lama believes deliberate practice not only works for muscles, but also for our mind. He and other wise minds deliberately practice taking other people's anger, suspicion and mistrust and then giving them patience, tolerance and compassion in return. What do you think about deliberate practice, can we also use it for training our thinking skills? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Shaolin Monk Routine: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/stacey-nemour/shaolin-kung-fu_b_747649.html
Effectiveness of Deliberate Practise: http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0956797614535810
Cigar and Violin Study: https://www.amazon.de/Lernen-Gehirnforschung-die-Schule-Lebens/dp/3827417236 http://www.pedocs.de/volltexte/2009/749/pdf/978_3_8274_1723_7_Spitzer.pdf http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/10/03/personal-best
10,000 Hour Rule: http://lifehacker.com/5939374/a-better-way-to-practice ‘ Coach: http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/10/03/personal-best
Deliberate Practise http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0956797614535810
14 Motivation Tips
Posted on 2017/05/08 12:05
By popular demand in the comment section below our Study Tips Video, we created these 14 tips of how to find motivation in order to get going. This video is not so much a selection of scientific findings, but a combination of common sense, quotes of big thinkers, and some studies that show how priming or reminding ourself of our values can impact our motivation and performance.Read More »
Posted on 2017/03/31 07:03
Grit is a combination of character traits, such as self-control, passion and perseverance. Many modern psychologists, educators and parents now believe it's more important for success in life than good grades at school or an outstanding intelligence.Read More »
Posted on 2017/03/23 04:03
A learning organization encourages personal mastery and cultivates open feedback to see problems and opportunities on all levels. Some argue that learning organizations attract and retain more talents. Others say that there is a competitive advantage for an organization whose people learn faster than the people of other organizations. Here are 6 characteristics most have in common:Read More »
Posted on 2017/02/21 11:02
John Mighton, a Canadian playwright, author, and math tutor who struggled with math himself, has designed a teaching program that has some of the worst-performing math students performing well and actually enjoying math. There’s mounting evidence that the method works for all kids of all abilities.Read More »