To provide rich learning experiences, which are reproducible, scalable and impactful.
Education is a vital point for everyone’s lives, for industries to grow, for an individual to have opportunities, and for our democracies to succeed. But our methods are stuck on long traditions of outdated assumptions, or on an overflow of information coming from the internet which is hard to handle and structure into knowledge. We need better learning experiences, and Lambda One is working on engineering such interactions, one of which is the Workshop Model presented on this document.
A reproducible workshop learning experience (the session) with the following properties:
Learning is enhanced when there is a clear purpose, by structuring the session in 3 sections with underlying answers to: “Why? How? What?”, a reason motivates the attendee to discuss, practice and learn the presented concepts.
Social interaction is a powerful tool for education, through the session before exposing an assertion to be learnt, we give the opportunity of discussion by posting a meaningful question to the group.
The person playing the role of the workshop guide will use a prepared structured path of assertions with preceding questions to be discussed. The guide posts the question, followed by a couple of minutes of discussion, which is started by the guide by letting volunteers express their thoughts or by randomly choosing someone. e.g. The question: “what is one of the biggest challenges for programmers?”, The assertion: “controlling complexity.”
The guide should try to integrate the individuals who are hesitant of participating, by doing questions like: “What do you think of this, Tim?”
Disagreement is very welcome and is as an opportunity for enrichment, but it must be dealt with reasonable argumentation.
It is easy to think but not easy to reason. The attendees are encouraged to take a moment to deeply reason about a concept by applying the Feyman technique.
For most of the questions, after posting it and before the discussion, the guide should give everyone 1 to 2 minutes to write down the answer according to their own thoughts. Then the discussion can start by reading the writing of 3 of the attendees. Finally, after the guide has revealed the assertion and given the explanation behind it, the attendees are given another 2 minutes to rewrite what they previously expressed.
Continued repetition of common patterns is a basis to long-term learning, and also an opportunity to experience the application of the given concepts.
The section “What?” is mostly composed of exercises, which show the application of the taught concepts and train the mind.
Knowledge is not linear, is a big graph of concepts, a good example is the graph behind Wikipedia. The workshop session should cater to a specific connection in such graph, that is, given that an attendee already knows how to add, through the workshop we can teach and output the knowledge of multiplication. This “sectioning” is effectively modularising the workshop, enabling us to draw a graph which attendees can use to cherry pick the workshops and experiences they need to attend to expand their own knowledge graph further.
Note for those with Category Theory knowledge: We might define an “Ontological Category” by letting the objects of the category be “concepts” and the morphisms a relationship of structural dependency, for example, “Addition -> Multiplication” is expressing that the concept of Multiplication derives from the concept of Addition. But also we could see such morphisms “A -> B” as functions in which given that a student “knows A”, through the process of teaching he could derive the “knowledge of B”, and the implementation of such function is an experience like the workshop, which at the same time is modularised by this structure.
Products and coproducts efficiently model multiple dependencies, e.g. “Addition X Multiplication -> Algebra”.
- A session of 2 hours
- Clear requirements of knowledge (minimum amount of things the attendee needs to know) Note: attendees who are curious should be let to participate even if they don’t meet the requirements
- Clear output of knowledge (things the attendee will learn)
- A social group of between 2 to 20 individuals
- A session guide
- Prepared structured questions and assertions which lead to the understanding of the theoretical concepts
- Prepared exercises for the “What” section
- Application of the Feynman technique in between questions
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