Home School Teaching and Functional Organization

Home school teachers must consider not only the type of information their children take in, but how they can later retrieve that information at will and apply it to new situations. It's important that home school learning include a way to teach functional organization rather than relying on rote memory for later retrieval. Let's take a look at what functional organization is, in terms of learning, and how the home school teacher can use it to their child's advantage.

About the Role of Functional Organization In Real Learning

Functional organization refers to a framework for learning that allows the brain to take in information and then place it somewhere logical so that it can be later retrieved on demand.

Research has shown that functional organization is a learned, built-upon framework for learning. What a child learns in his early years has a direct bearing upon the ways he learns new things at a later age. It's also important to first teach basic aspects of complex subject as a learning foundation.

In a study by Castro-Caldas, Petersson, Reis, Stone-Elander, and Ingvar (1998), the researchers found that illiterate people who had never learned a written language did not use the same neural structures as literate subjects to process spoken language. These results show that the skills of reading and writing learned during childhood affect the adult brain's functional organization. Without a foundational skill set, adults who must learn related material later are at a disadvantage because they do not have the same functional organization in place.

Using Functional Organization in Home School Teaching

The same is true for your school-age kids, particularly when it comes to learning science. Often the most difficult part of learning subjects such as chemistry and physics is that students don't know how to sort the information they are taking in.

I like to call this the learning "junk drawer". Just as you probably have a drawer in your home that contains all manner of items from tools to tape, so does your child have a mental drawer where random facts get laid to rest. How easy is it for you to find a paper clip in the midst of all the stuff in your junk drawer? How easy is it for your child to retrieve a random science fact from her learning junk drawer?

What makes it easier to find data upon demand is a system of organization and a framework for tying together all those random facts. It all starts with a good foundation of basic, essential information. That basic information gets properly stored in a systemized fashion. As knowledge is built upon, it has a logical place to go and it just makes sense. And when science makes sense, your kids will be much more eager and interested in learning complex concepts.

Finally, in order to set the functionally organized information into retrievable memory banks, children must be subjected to hands-on learning such as experimentation. This really cements the learning in place while guiding your child toward discovery, which makes science interesting and exciting. This is also a great way to help her apply the information to new situations and perhaps even solve a unique problem.

Functional organization is a vital part of real learning. When selecting home school science curriculum for your children, make sure that it features a comprehensive framework and a way to help your child organize information so it can easily be retrieved later, in distinctive situations. And that's real learning.

Article Source: Dr Rebecca Keller

No comments:

Post a Comment