Teach a student how to learn, and they will learn for a lifetime

Reading time: 2 min

I was recently asked how I know so much about a particular field despite having received no formal education in that field.

I responded: “[Search engine] is at your fingertips.”

“If you want to know something, you can look it up.” (Preferably using good, reliable sources, and multiple sources to support a particular bit of knowledge.) An uncountable number of books, studies, videos, and articles (among others) are accessible on the internet. As long as we are willing to invest the time and effort to learn, we can become well-versed in anything.

We live in a time of information abundance. If we want to learn something, for many of us, and increasingly the global population, resources and tutorials are a few taps away.

To a great extent, schools in many areas around the world should no longer focus on delivering knowledge directly from the teacher to the student. Rather, schools should empower the student to find knowledge (with modern methods), evaluate its reliability, and put their new knowledge to use.

It's the equivalent of this proverb:

"give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

Teach a student something, and they learn for a day*; teach a student how to learn, and they will learn for a lifetime.


*and probably forgets soon after. See Forgetting Curve.

Related thought:

Also, see:


Publishing and blog management from mobile, thank you, Standard Notes! Plays right into “the laziest/most convenient method of capture is the best method”.


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