Observational Learning

8 May


We know the adage – or is it a cliche? Do what I say, not what I do. But that’s a bit stupid because, as social beings we learn more from observation. This is so evident in Stephen, who is 20 months old. There are things that he does that I know that I never taught him deliberately. For example, Stephen always wants to play in the can and he knows that the car key goes into the ignition. He holds a miniature cricket and poses like a genuine batsman – I never told him how to do that. One of the funniest things is how carefully he move a computer mouse around.
Ok, maybe it’s just easier for a toddler to learn like that because it is difficult to communicate otherwise.
Just thoughts.

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2 Responses to “Observational Learning”

  1. Kathy May 11, 2009 at 7:30 pm #

    I always find this a scary thought- the observational thing, because it could backfire so badly! He’s taking everything in, and I do mean everything, the good and the bad! This morning he was watching Phill shave, and part of me was thinking, I had better make sure there is no way he can reach that, or else that will be his next experiment! I’ve had to check myself lately that I’m doing everything I hope he will do- watch my manners, my responses to people, my habits. There is a sponge watching after all!

  2. Kathy May 15, 2009 at 1:42 pm #

    Today I had a real observational learning moment! Stephen had the drying up cloth and I asked him to go and put it away for me. He went to the stove and looked at the oven door- where we usually hang it, and then looked very puzzled. After a moment he came back to me and tried to hang it over my shoulder. I had such a laugh, because if I am ever in the kitchen, that’s where the cloth is- to the annoyance of family and husband! I have never once talked about that- he’s just a good observer!

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