Back to the Classics

To teach, to learn, to change

Why isolated learning can be better

The remote, asynchronous model of the Freeman Academy and many other online schools offers some social advantages, and a chance to break down some of the outdated ideas that have lingered in education.

People learn and develop at different paces, especially children. The idea of grouping children by ages, rather than by ability, is a relic of the industrial age, with its view of people as part of a huge machine and perfectly interchangeable. People have different abilities, different interests, different challenges. Grouping kids by age creates an expectation that they will all learn at the same rate and in the same way. A child that lags behind in something or gets ahead in something faces terrible social pressure for being different. For a teenager or an adult, admitting to not understanding something others consider basic (for example, having difficulty with reading comprehension or multiplication) can be overwhelming.

The Academy is perfectly positioned to avoid all that.

The way our classes will be set up, all learning is individual. A student will never have to repeat a class, because they take the class at their own speed. When he or she knows the subject and has demonstrated their competence at it, they will move on to the next step. No one knows how quickly they progress but the student (and their parent if it’s a child) and any tutor they may work with.

What other advantages can you see in working on your own like this?

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One thought on “Why isolated learning can be better

  1. rawlenyanzi on said:

    It breaks the idea that there is always a set of inflexible rules to follow when you want to succeed at something.

    Think about how ingrained this is. When we are small, we are sent to school, where we’re taught to follow directions. We follow the rules and do all of the assignments, we get rewarded with good grades and move up to the next grade. We break the rules, we get punished with detention and bad grades.

    Now repeat this process for 16 more years consecutively.

    The result is a person who believes that the only way to succeed at a goal is to follow a set of clearly defined guidelines which will guarantee a reward 100% of the time. If there is no set path, they are lost and don’t know what to do.

    We must break this mentality, this mentality that there is some royal road to guaranteed success, that if we just follow some magic set of instructions we will get a reward and move up, just like our teachers rewarded us back in school.

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