Monday Motivation | On Learning


This week's Monday Motivation quote is about something that's always on our minds – learning! It's half of what we're all about. Yes, learning and dancing is where it's at. That's why this intersection of those ideas was too good not to share. 

Obviously, an analogy to dance is something we can easily understand. To put this quote in context, Professor Daniel L. Schwartz is speaking about how there is not one best way to learn, rather our brains have all these different systems that help us learn in different ways. Therefore, instead of seeing the brain as a muscle that you strengthen by practicing the same thing over and over, we should be looking at how these systems work and putting them together to really learn and effectively teach. Just like choreographing a ballet — you don't just repeat the same dance steps, you find the best combination of movement to create something truly beautiful. 

This quote comes from a news story from Stanford University about the new book — The ABCs of How We Learn: 26 Scientifically Proven Approaches, How They Work, and When to Use Them, by Professor Daniel Schwartz, dean of Stanford's Graduate School of Education, and researchers Jessica Tsang and Kristen Blair. In the article, researcher Kristen Blair goes on to share a reason why she likes chapter J best:

It points out how different kinds of learning approaches that are sometimes pitted against each other – like active learning versus lectures – can work together to support robust learning.

All this layering of how to learn and combine educational practices reminds us of how we approach teaching dance. For example, we encourage using multiple modalities to help students better learn and enjoy our materials and the movements they perform. We think this book includes a ton of information that could be applied in a dance studio; don't you agree?

If this peaks your interest, we recommend reading Schwartz's book. It's our October book club selection, so you can check back for our review and discuss it with us at the end of the month!