Hannes Saarmets

Profesor de inglés

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THE REASON FOR LEARNING SOMETHING NEW: TWO EXTRAORDINARY ABILITIES THAT HUMANS HAVE

I can`t think of many big animals who who we could compete with in strength, speed and beauty. Humans are relatively weak. We have at least two important capacity that favor us, though. Some humans use them wisely while others are not even aware of them. First, we have an exceptional ability to adapt in new ways of communication. Second, we are very creative. If we develop those traits, we will become excellent learners.
 

THE POWER OF HUMAN COMMUNICATION
 

All the species on a planet interact, but humans` ability to learn and develop new skills for communication is exceptional.

Wolves also cooperate effectively in their closed group, but they are not able to adapt their social system so dynamically and quickly as humans. They would never join another unfamiliar group and start learning their rules of communication just for curiosity, so as we, humans do (for example, moving to other countries and integrate in new societies).

For humans, curiosity to discover something new is the driving force to look for meaning in life. So, we are inventing new systems for better communication (like technology or new learning methods). Therefore our world is becoming more and more international.
 

Human interaction entails much more than just exchanging practical information. It is very profound and powerful.

A historian Yuval Noah Harari, the author of „Sapiens“ says that humans are the only species on planet that can communicate on unknown topics ( „Things that do not yet exist anywhere else but in our heads“).

So, we were able to imagine robots when they did not yet even exist. The same way we are talking with foreigners even if we understand very little their language. We just imagine that we can do it, and then we turn our imaginations into reality. This is creativity.

 

THE POWER OF CREATIVITY

Creativity matters in communication with many participants.

If one person tells us a definition of a computer, there is nothing creative about it. When a group of people debate about the future of an artificial intelligence, they must be creative, though – they exchange ideas, not just words. 

Educationalist Ken Robinson, the author of „Element“, says humans are inherently creative, and therefore we have so extraordinary cultures: „We create and we re-create our lives by finding and comparing options. The best way to awaken our creativity would be to modernize education, because in our dominant culture, the main focus is on standardized testing.“

If our traditional education does not help us become more creative, what should we do?
 

We become creative when we decide to do things differently together.

Creative communication happens in groups. We can perhaps study web development individually, but not learn and practice a new language. It would be the same as learning dancing alone. 

If we want to learn by the help of creative communication, we need new type of learning groups. Groups where the roles of the participants are assigned differently from traditional institutes.

The group leaders are not only instructors, but also tutors, motivators and coaches – responsibile for engaging the participants actively in the interaction. The participants are learners, but they are also responsibile for helping each other to express their ideas.

 

Unlike computers that absorb information, humans must experience and practice learning creatively in meaningful situations. Good learning needs creative communication where group members help each other develop the ideas.

Creative communication offers many opportunities – the world is becoming more and more international and we can learn anything from different cultures. To make a start, it is time to learn foreign languages!

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