How a child learns?


What is intelligence? How precisely it can be defined? How a person learns? When this process is started in a person?… The answer to all these and many more such mysterious questions have always been highly sought after to all of us, specially to the people interested in understanding the intelligent behaviour. It is always facinating exploring the deep roots of this process. About one year ago, when my daughter was born, I also thought how she will learn. I was wondering how a new born will adjust itself with its surroundings. We adult often think that it is us who teach everything about the world to our childern. But how will you teach a new born, when you don’t have any exclusive medium to interact or communicate with him or her. It seems there is a programmed process in the child’s brain which executes in pre-defined phases and tells him or her how to try to be in sync with the environment. They observe the things and events happening around them and try to generate some responses which might seem having no meaning to the elders, but for them, they are meaningful. I was amazed to see my daughter how keen observer she is.  One key characteristic that plays important role in a child’s learning, I think, is of imitation. They try to imitate the things in their own way, whenever they saw others doing something. Like my daughter puts mobile phone or any other object on her ear and says “hap…” for hello, she directs the remote towards TV in the same way as we do and so on… In this way, they devlope their skills over time and their responses become more smoother day by day. Moreover, their own experiences help them to decide about their actions or responses to the events. They learn incrementally.

All these above written facts about learning are well-known. It is a complex phenomena involving many sub-processes. I was prompted to write something about it because I am seeing happening it step by step in my daily life and gives me a lot of pleasure whenever my daughter learns a little bit or try to do something new or talks to me in her own utterences that not understandable to me at all, but for her, through them, she expresses her thoughts.

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