Homeschooling, Unschooling, & Free / Democratic / Non-traditional Learning
Your Name and Title: P. Aravinda
Organization or School Name:
Area of the World from Which You Will Present: Maryland
Language in Which You Will Present: English
Target Audience(s): Learners, including parents and teachers
Short Session Description (one line): In defense of slow learning, in the spirit slow food, slow money and slow love.
Full Session Description (as long as you would like):
Slow learning recognizes the learning that takes place because something else was not learned. The “something else” typically belongs to a standard roster of learning outcomes, already known and classified according to the knowledge system in the community prevailing around the learner. While not learning this prevailing knowledge, the learner explores other knowledge, with a freedom that depends precisely on the inability of the prevailing community to recognize and classify that knowledge. The learner pursues knowledge as if doing it for the first time in history, regardless of its value or correctness in the prevailing knowledge system.
Therefore while typical education programs may have a checklist of learning outcomes that will be used to evaluate the learners, with more checked items indicating more learning and in turn greater success of the program, slow learning looks between and beneath the checked items to the inner curriculum driving the learning of the child. In this sense, the fewer checked items, the more space for this inner curriculum to grow.
Slow learning empowers the learner over the learned and honours what is not learned and what is not readily recognized as learning by prevailing knowledge systems.
I was not familiar before reading this with the idea of "slow learning" but I love the connections. Awesome.
I love that you've turned the tables on the otherwise derogatory inference "Slow Learner". And also turning the tables on the trend towards hitting milestones earlier and earlier. This is more about learning as something to enjoy and savour. It is less about the goal, and more about the process; where the destination is secondary and the journey is what matters.
After hearing you speak about slow learning in the Learning Societies Unconference in 2012, I was inspired. I consciously do not interfere in my daughter's journey of curious, creative discovery and invention. Unless of course asked questions or help. I feel enriched and satisfied to watch her grow. Thanks and looking forward to hearing more on this subject.