Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Rubiks cube and peer learning

When we were children, the Rubiks cube was a source of immense fascination. It was eminently unsolvable and those who solved it came on TV news.

Somehow, it never struck us then that it had to have an algorithm to be solved.

Cut to the internet age. Every kid has the cube and the algorithm and after that it is no big deal at all. Layer by layer, they get it.

And thats when the fun ends. If it is a matter of just knowing the algorithm, whats the big deal?

 No, it has not been dumbed down, even with the algorithm it is a great learning - for visual patterns, memory and even the 'aha' moment.

So, from being an inscrutable mystery, the Rubiks cube is a great learning tool and like kids competitively reading books to keep pace with each other, the Rubiks cube is a quest for mastery among the kids.

I love the way kids learn competitively. When kids learn together and learn competitively, they learn well -helping each other and making each other better.

And that is a great recipe for a peer learning process. Except that kids grow up to be adults...

Hint: Self Motivation :)

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