MIND POWER AND LEARNING
Mind is powerful. It never grows, as it is already grown when one takes birth. Only thing is it is to be nurtured to coop with the growth of the body. The mind is like an unpolished diamond. More you polish more it shines. However, we must be cautious enough while polishing the mind. A wrong approach may end up in overwhelming.
By birth, the mind has the power to perceive, to hear, to touch, to taste and to smell. It is like computer (only for illustration sake, in reality it has more power than the computer since the wonder machine itself is the creation of the mind – the wonder beyond comprehension) and it can register all the perceptions you experience. Its power and speed are unimaginable. It spreads the message in no time to the organs concerned. It makes us to react within fraction of seconds after we encounter the action.
The interconnections of the mind system are beyond our comprehension and one cannot even thoroughly understand the whole system of interconnection and ‘message pass on’ mechanism. The astonishing fact is that the mind generally never gets tired of its duty and becomes inactive. It always acts swiftly and rightly (individuals’ perception). It is only our conscious and unconscious approaches make the mind system ill functioning.
If you take the air-conditioner or the computer, who’s functioning depends on several factors such as moisture, room temperature, dust, voltage fluctuations etc. In the same way, the system of mind depends on several internal and external factors that influence the mind in both ways i.e. positive and negative. The external factors, which may be very silly such as your posture while learning, the classroom environment etc., do influence your mind.
As such, it is very complex to control the mind and make it to adjust to the environment. Unless it adjusts itself with the learning environment, it would not allow you to grasp whatever is presented before you. Here the psychologists prescribe several methods of mind control to suit your learning climate. No particular method of mind control can be adopted always as the learning objectives differ from time to time according to your wish and interest.
When we have the habit of going to the temples in a particular time, unconsciously our mind gets prepared for the action when the particular time comes. We have experienced that when we take breakfast in a particular time and place, whenever we go to that particular quarter in our house or the particular time strikes, we are automatically reminded of our breakfast. How does it happen? It is nothing but conditioning. Our action is conditioned with the time and place as per our habit or practice. In the same way, we must condition ourselves for learning. Similarly, the children are also to be motivated for such conditioned learning environment. Fix a place and time for learning and reading. (Again formal! You may feel so. But this formalness is with an informal intention). Then make the child to observe the same. After some time we can observe the conditioning in the child. However, it is to be kept in mind that no single system is suitable for all the children as children are conditioned to various factors according to their wish and interest.
When we give rote-learning assignments to children, we must be careful. Before they get into by heart the portion, let them understand the central theme of the passage or the poem. This will minimize their efforts. Instead of concentrating on the complex part of the assignment, make them to pay attention towards the simple and plain portion. If we train the child to proceed from simple to complex, it will help them to balance their mind and condition in a proper way.
Adopt the same method when you teach. First, present before the children the central or the main theme of the lesson and elaborate it. Instead, if we go on elaborating the lengthy text, the children may get bored as they could not catch up the central point of the text and they never wait until the last moment to know the idea of the text. This is a sort of conditioning and the children once get acquainted with your style and method they will follow your words and ideas with ease.
Whatever the child learns it is to be learned several times. If a particular concept is learned several times, it will not fade away from the memory of the child. Long memory requires two important factors. One is clarity and the other is repetition. If a child reads repeatedly without clarity or reads once with clarity, the memory will only be short-lived in both the cases. So any concept is retained for long when it is clearly understood and repeatedly read.
In any classroom, we cannot expect all the children learn at the same pace. The actual pace of learning is decided by the child and not by the teacher. So let us give the child a chance to learn at his speed and place. If you feel that the pace of learning is too slow then it is your duty to provide a chance for essential supplementary activities by which the pace of learning gets accelerated. Motivating the child and assessing the level of learning performance is the key for success in any classroom.