You’re learning all the time, and if you’re like most of us, you’re teaching as well. From training an employee on a new procedure to mentoring a rising leader, your objective is to equip others to be successful.
You probably don’t sit down with the latest brain research to figure out the best way to pass on knowledge and build competence. But since learning is moving information from short-term to long-term memory, understanding how the brain works best will help you be a better teacher.
From One Brain to Another: What We’ve Learned About Learning in Training Industry Quarterly is one of the most practical reads on this topic you’ll find. Here are just a few tips:
Use novelty. When presented with the same type of stimulation, our brains get bored and shut down. Use humor, music, movement and other unexpected means to convey information. The more senses you engage, the more areas of the brain work to create learning. Plus, because people vary in how they learn best, your approach will work for more learners.
Keep the atmosphere positive. You’ve explained the process in three different ways, but the other person isn’t getting it. Frustrating, yes, but breathe deeply and smile. Negative experiences trigger a whole series of hormonal reactions that shut down the learning centers of the brain.Yes, it’s sometimes it’s hard to develop competency, and being irked may make it impossible.
Have people teach others. Once they’ve gotten it, ask the learner to teach someone else the new skill right away. This will help them solidify their own understanding. It will force them to spend some time to refresh their learning and put it into context with the real work at hand.
You don’t need to be a neurobiologist to train and teach, but you will help people solidify learning by understanding how their brains work best. And you might also get to sing while you do it.
Get your learning on! Humanergy will help you develop new skills and teach others!
Photo from iStockphoto.
In my surgery internship the saying was —“See One –Do One–Teach One”. For the patient that may not be comforting and the meaning was clearly–when you get to the level of “Teach One” you would be competent in doing a specific procedure.
Isn’t there theory of retention (memories) that state that the longest retained memories is when our norepinephrine levels are the highest. It would seem fear would raise these levels. We always have prolonged memories of scary times.
Recently on 60 minutes there was a segment on a small segment of the population that “never forget anything” very interesting.