Learning as a Journey, Not a Destination

I had the good fortune to spend a semester in Italy during college. Since I didn’t speak any Italian, I signed up for the introductory language course. The professor would assign us an activity, without any explanation, then wait a few minutes and give us the answers. It seemed like a waste of time.

Noticing my classmates’ frustration, I decided to let the professor know that the format wasn’t working well for us. I then, naively, suggested that maybe we could try doing the explanation first and then the activity. She listened patiently, thanked me for letting her know, and then politely declined. She reminded me that part of the experience of being abroad was seeing how other cultures do things. This was how teaching was done in Italy.

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