Motivation Monday: Spark Learning Through Curiosity! [Here Are 3 Rules on How!]


It’s Monday, the beginning of a new week, and you need words of motivation to start your week off right.

This week’s words of motivation: Spark Learning Through Curiosity!

In this short TED talk video, we see the chemistry and magic of curiosity!

Ramsey Musallam, a high school chemistry teacher at Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep in San Francisco, shows us how intense learning can be the heart behind successful life-threatening surgeries and  “the magnets” towards strengthening bonds between teachers and students–just by applying these three simple rules:

1. Curiosity Comes First!
2. Embrace the mess
3. Practice Reflection

My favorite takeaway from this TED talk was the simple fact that he asked his surgeon on how he performed his life-saving operation. The usual response that a surgeon would receive, after completing a successful surgery like this one, is this:

Thank you very much for saving my life!” and then walk out the door.

Admit it! We all have done it!

However, it was Ramsey’s curiosity that proved to everyone that intense learning or asking questions does in fact save lives!

In my personal opinion, I appreciated this talk very much because it sheds light on important issues that are missing in classrooms today nationwide: lack of curiosity and inquiry. It’s not standardized tests that yield success but engagement. If you can not engage your students or spark their learning through curiosity, then they will never be interested. I strongly feel that the biggest reason behind the high dropout rates amongst high school students at various high schools is that there is no curiosity or the will to try something new in the classroom!

My favorite teacher who was able to spark my curiosity more than ever was Mr. Ray Menegus, Retired Calculus Professor at San Diego State University. Even though his class dealt with difficult trigonometric functions and long differential equations, he was able to peak my curiosity through his life examples and dry humor. He made me love calculus–I would even attend two classes on the same subject just to hear him talk!

So this week, spark your learning through curiosity and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Also, try to apply these three rules in every endeavor of your life. Curiosity was the biggest engine behind Prince’s Daily Journal, so use it to jump start your learning curve or maybe your career!

If you wish to see more of Ramsey Musallam’s TED talks go to: www.ted.com/speakers/ramsey_musallam

To learn more about him, and follow his blogs on education and technology, go to: www.cyclesoflearning.com

You can also follow Ramsey on Twitter @ramusallam

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