Saturday, December 10, 2011

Concept 2 Of 6 - The Basic Philosophy Of Alex's Home Schooling



Song:  Atlantis

Group:  Two Steps From Hell



Our second major tenet:


EXPLANATION OF CONCEPTS


To explain the fundamental governing concepts
is to give your child knowledge of the whole tree...
as well as a map of the forest
(conceptual understanding)...
instead of just the leaves and twigs they happen to be on...
only able to navigate as far as the next branch.

Without conceptual knowledge...
they swing from branch to branch as a monkey does.

 Having no understanding of the fundamentals
 leads to a monkey see - monkey do aptitude (regurgitation).

If the question is similar to what they had learned...
they can answer it.

However, should you ask them how to apply it to a real life situation...
they are often lost.  Of course...they had no understanding of the layout of
the tree or of its neighbors.  They don't know how they interrelate.

The primate who merely regurgitates information...
is the primate who see the fruit before him...and picks it.

The primate who understands the concepts...
understands the nature of the fruit.

He soon climbs down from the tree...
learns to walk and explore the forest...
learns when to predict where and when the fruit will be or appear...
he learns to plant and control the harvest.

He is not afraid to venture forth as he can apply the concepts
to other trees and forests...the streams, lakes, and oceans.

With concepts, questions are generated in his mind.
He then devises ways to answer them and apply the result to 
a much wider area.

He learns to think inductively...
finding new and useful ways or things by applying concepts.


A concept is a generalized guide of the subject said in
a manner so simplified that it applies to the whole.

It becomes the Standard Operating Procedure...
a guide from where only the exceptions to the rule need
be remembered instead of trying to remember when to do everything.

It is the mountain top...not the particular route to the peak.


Part of my wife's success in guiding our son, Alex, in his academic achievements...
lies in the limiting of frustration through the explanation of the guiding principles
or concepts of the subjects.

This has allowed Alex to progress rapidly instead of having him founder
on a poorly explained problem example as had sometimes been lain out
by a particular educational program.

A concept is an explanation of the governing principles...
of which, through their correct application, a person may
achieve his goal in an efficient and effective manner.


A very basic concept that should apply to everything in life:

The quality (not only the quality of one, but all the necessary types included) 
plus the quantity (optimum amounts)...
 plus time (the optimum rate applied for the requisite period)
is needed to effect the desired change.

You need all three.

The degree of one vs. the others may help offset the others to a point...  
although, there is usually a minimum threshold necessary in each.


Example 1:

Antibiotics - in order to get a full kill of the undesired bacteria...
you must have the right type of antibiotic and in the right strength...
in the correct quantities administered at the appropriate times 
and for the appropriate number of days.

To do less is to, at most, get only a partial kill.
This lets the ones which are naturally more resistant to replicate.
What results is a tougher and more resistant strain that then requires
stronger and or longer usage of the antibiotics...
or even totally new antibiotics to combat them.  
Transmitted from person to person...
any failure to apply the full concept leads to a worsening of the problem...
and so, the advent of the superbugs.

Ok...the point is self evident for most.


Example 2:

Dietary Health - The inclusion of the positive effect inducing foods in the optimum 
amounts, while excluding the negative effect inducing foods, for the desired period of time
(for the lifetime).

Self evident again?

Super secret diets, diet aids, short term deprivation gimmicks...etc...
are a multi billion dollar industry.

Most don't take into account the desired period of time.

Unless the "diet" is healthful and delicious enough to stick to 
for a lifetime...it is worthless.

Easy?  Yes
Simple?  Yes
Common Sense?  Should be.


My short point:

The concept of
 Quantity / Quality / Time...
applies to everything in life.


My long point:

People can often follow a schedule as applied to a particular subject as laid out.  
They will then be able to apply it to the same set of circumstances by rote.

However,  should they not understand the fundamental concept...
when new variables are to be considered...
many are often confounded.

With a concept mastered (the governing principles)...
adaptability is ensured.




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