Confucius, born in 551 B. C., before naming him a foremost philosopher in ancient China, was surely ranked as one of the greatest teachers. A lot of his quotes about education and learning still have influence on Chinese beliefs and traditions today.
In the book of Analects of Confucius recording his words and deeds, the very first paragraph of first chapter Xuer/ 学而 is the famous words of :
学而时习之, 不亦说乎? (Xué ér shí xí zhī ,bù yì yuè hū ?) , isn't it a great pleasure to practice in due time what one has learnt ?
有朋自远方来， 不亦乐乎? (Yǒupéng zì yuǎnfāng lái, bù yì lè hū?) " isn't it a delight should comrades visit from afar?
Here " 时" / "due time" has multiple folds of meaning: different moment of a day requires different learning method; different seasons of a year give various topics to study correspondingly; different period of life enables acquisition of different knowledge, age difference has impact on learning styles......
( For detailed discussion about" 时" / "due time" , see Recommended reading: Learning in Confucian Culture: real world connected themes for learners)
And, "朋" originally meant "classmates", "disciples" , indicating Confucius students across the country. It then was extended to "friends". When friends, comrades come from afar and bring new thoughts to the discussion, isn't inspiring?
Here, Confucius has recognized the importance of exchange and discussion among students themselves, and between teachers and students. In other words, learning from each other is pleasant and efficient method.
This principle was also confirmed by another quote from Confucius :
三人行，必有我师/ Sān rénxíng, bì yǒu wǒ shī / When we walk with two others, there must be one we can learn from.
This the probably the origin of peer-to-peer learning, which is heavily discussed nowadays. It's amazing to see how much we can learn from our ancestors. And, it is funny to think that Confucius was probably the first person who advocated theme-based education, age-adapted learning, and peer learning!
Weekly Cartoon Recommendation: New Neighbor
Let's watch an episode of cartoon New Neighbor from Paper Planet , and see where in Paper Planet, peer-learning rule would be applied or not!
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