For many persons learning takes place in the classroom, for some it occurs when they see how things are done.
In some programmes, the observation of activities may form one aspect of the "practicum." This element adds weight or value to the course and is intended to be one way in which the student is shaped by attending a particular school, through the use of conscious observation of activities. Thus when we hear about great schools, great teachers, great programmes, great students, some of the elements of the "practicum" concept may have been included in the curriculum.
On the other side to formal learning, one of the things which I have learnt from observing individuals who achieve or accomplish a great deal is that they learn continually. One way in which learning takes place is through the frequent use of their creative thinking... Thus they attempt crossword puzzles, word find and or word scramblers. One of our local newspapers, the "Guardian" of Trinidad and Tobago provides access to this type of learning. Quite frequently, a page is devoted to some of these 'creative thinking type exercises". *
Over time I realized that I may not achieve a level of competence in a certain time frame with Sudoku, or cross words, after all, one can "hog" a newspaper for so long. However I realized that I wanted to keep trying the word scramblers. Thus I started listing the word to the back of my notebook.
When the list of words to scramble reached about six and I had not attempted scrambling the letters of any of the words, I took a time out and listed all of the words at the top of one page. Then I started creating words out of that one word which was listed in columnar format at the top of the page. When I started experiencing difficulty with any word, I counted up the words which I had created, listed it at the top of the page and I moved on to another word.
Midway through the exercise, I stopped and decided to catch up on my writing as I wanted to capture all or some of what was buzzing in my head....
Hmmm I may not have studied or practiced any exam papers, but I continued to learn in a way that will help me to develop habits and knowledge going forward....
* Another way the newspaper contributes to learning or catching up on learning is through their weekly publication of SEA, & CSEC practice tests with the results being published later in the week.
The information on the theory and application of the "practicum" was provided by Dr. Vena Jules President of CREDI and Mr. Alfred Wafe, Head of Practicum at CREDI in 2011. The concept was discussed in relation to the Bachelor of Education with Honours programmes which were offered by CREDI, Trinidad and Tobago from 2011. http://credi.edu.tt/