Learning is Hard – And Scary!

When's the last time YOU learned something new. It's hard, right?I’m learning how to write a business plan. And it’s hard!

But I’m not just doing it to see if I can. There’s real meaning to learning this: I’m writing the business plan for Math Philanthropy, Inc.

And when I’m done, I’ll submit it into a business plan competition.

In this process, I’m discovering a few things:

  1. I’m scared that what I write will sound dumb.
  2. I worry that I’m not putting in enough.
  3. I wonder if I’m putting in too much.

And what if everything I write is wrong?

Sound familiar?

If you’ve ever learned math (or anything), you’ve had the same experience.

Because learning is hard!

Watch your students. Are they scared? Or are they energized and excited about making mistakes?

It’s likely they have some level of fear.

Fear interrupts learning.

If we can get students to appreciate that mistakes lead to learning, they may be better with it.

If we can help them understand that brain growth happens when they’re challenged, they might settle down.

But it still won’t take it all away.

Empathize with them.

To really understand them, take on something new. Something hard. Something meaningful.

Something that you aren’t sure you can do.

Feel the fear.

Because that’s what your students feel everyday.

Genuine learning is hard.

And knowing just how hard it is, will help you help them work through it.

Now go learn!

I’m freaked out with my new thing. And I’m sharing those experiences with my students.

What new thing will you take on?

Share your thoughts in the comments, on Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest!

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