From the book “Teaching with enthusiasm” by Simon Soloveichik

From the book “Teaching with enthusiasm” by Simon Soloveichik

Fifteen or twenty years ago, researchers seriously discussed whether a car could become smarter than a human being. The machines proved to be very capable students. Nevertheless, they can not do the main thing – creating, thinking, feeling. Feelings, passion are not just satellites of the mind, as sometimes they think, they are employees of thinking, co-authors of every thought born of the mind of a person.

We will carry out the experiment. We assign the sixth grade student and computer the same task. Neither he nor the machine has ever decided. What will the computer do? He will go over all the rules for solving more or less similar problems, will determine that none of the rules are suitable for this task and refuse to decide. Decide without “known to him” the

rules he can not.

And the student? He will soon realize that the task is completely new. And still will continue to ponder. He does not have enough information, knowledge, he does not know the method of solution. If there is not enough information for the machine, it stops working. If the information is not enough for the person, in this case our sixth grader, he begins… to worry! There arises exactly what is called “feeling.” He worries, worries, strains the mind, aspires to a solution with his whole being, and suddenly after a long effort this decision is, the person seems to be beginning to see. Nothing magical happened – just from the experiences in the boy’s head suddenly merged disparate thoughts, they and then led to the find.

So, in order to successfully learn, you need to work not only the mind, but the heart. Knowledge must be sought. To study is to seek knowledge. To seek the truth.

It turns out that every time you sit down for lessons, you have to ask yourself: “What exactly do I want to know? What truth should I get?” But in order to correctly put this question, it is necessary to preliminarily study the paragraph. So, the work on the lesson will look like this: we read the paragraph – we formulate the main question, in its connection with the previous material – we try to answer it accurately, with complete clarity and persuasiveness. You can imagine that someone is objecting to us, giving other proofs, and we refute them.

We will try to teach lessons in two or three weeks, and we will not have to explain what is the excitement connected with the work of the mind! We learn about it ourselves, we will feel it ourselves. And if after that someone tells us that it’s boring to study, we’ll just regret the poor…


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From the book “Teaching with enthusiasm” by Simon Soloveichik