This post is a refresh of an earlier discussion regarding active vs. passive learning strategies. Thanks to John Hader for contributing a dissenting viewpoint.
The Economist published an article this week highlighting research in favor of active learning strategies. What I found interesting is that the students who were given some initial structure and then left to pursue learning identified more uses for the toys in shorter amount of time than other strategies. The summary and link follow:
Now you knowWhen should you teach children, and when should you let them explore?IT IS one of the oldest debates in education. Should teachers tell pupils the way things are or encourage them to find out for themselves? Telling children “truths” about the world helps them learn those facts more quickly. Yet the efficient learning of specific facts may lead to the assumption that when the adult has finished teaching, there is nothing further to learn—because if there were, the adult would have said so. A study just published in Cognition by Elizabeth Bonawitz of the University of California, Berkeley, and Patrick Shafto of the University of Louisville, in Kentucky, suggests that is true.