The "Learning by Asking Questions" Project
Nothing kills a student's desire to learn more than having to parrot answers. So in 2006, we decided to explore the role curiosity plays in education. To do this, each week for more than a year, the members of the Emergence Teacher's Group composed a series of questions which we were not allowed to answer with answers. Rather, we first had to let these questions bake in our minds. Then we had to respond to them by asking more questions. Not surprisingly, the longer we thought about the questions, the more we felt the desire to learn. Also, it seems that having to come up with questions about questions deepens this desire.
Fast forward six years to 2013. This is the year we realized that making things selectively visual is the key to learning. In effect, by restricting what the student can see, the student becomes curious. This has led us to a series of rather interesting realizations about the nature of teaching and learning.
- One—all learning starts in the heart.
- Two—only the prepared mind is open to learning.
- Three—curiosity is what prepares the mind to learn.
- Four—you cannot make yourself curious. You can only learn to notice when you are not curious.
- Five—you are not curious when you believe you already understand what are hearing, seeing, thinking, or feeling.
Know that realization number five is the most important tool a teacher could ever learn. Ironically, if you believe you already understand this tool, then you're preventing yourself from having any ahas about what I just said. Conversely, the more you let this statement provoke questions in you, the more you open your mind to having your own realizations.
The point? Questions are the manifestation of a curious mind. Thus if you let what you hear, see, think, and feel provoke unanswered questions in you—and if you learn to let these questions result in more questions rather than in answers—you'll exponentially expand your ability to teach and learn.
Week 2: Consciously Martial Arts
Week 4: Acclimating Babies to Water
Week 5: What Makes Something Art?
Week 8: Recording Music Using Computers
Week 11: Consciously Spending Money
Week 12: Parenting with Patience
Week 13: Appreciating Music
Week 15: Consciously Connecting in Emails
Week 16: Remaining Conscious While Reading
Week 17: Teaching and Learning about Death
Week 18: Being Needy
Week 19: Changing the Pictures in my Mind
Week 21: Traumatic Brain Injury and PTSD
Week 23: Doing Homework
Week 24: Consciously Managing An Office
Week 25: Meeting My Needs After Giving Birth
Week 26: What Makes a Person an Adult?
Week 27: How Much Have I Learned by Momentum?
Week 28: On The Four States of Learning
Week 29: How We Learn
Week 30: On Symptoms as Fractals
Week 31: Questions about Energy
Week 32: Separating From Children
Week 33: Is College a Waste of Money?
Week 34: Momentum Learning and Tragedy
Week 35: Living in an Unsafe World
Week 36: On Children Getting to Know You
Week 38: More on Dead Stops
Week 40: Learning to Enjoy Choices
Week 41: Physiology and Learning
Week 42: Learning to Love Learning Math
Week 43: The Four States of Learning
Week 44: Dead Stop - Learner's Block
Week 45: Knowing What Layer You Are In
Week 46: Character Types Out in Life
Week 47: On Layer Seven - Pure Needs
Week 53: Blame and the Mind Body Connection
Week 56: Questions Talk Therapists Might Ask
Week 58: Questions My Therapist Should Ask Me