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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Happier: Post #7--Education

Happiness in education:  Traditional education has a lot of pain-reward associated with right-wrong answers. At the end of the school year or semester, students experience great relief from the pain of the current education process. Instead, great education should create relief and joy all through the learning experience. Goleman says that 80% of success revolves around emotional intelligence and only 20% around IQ. Mihaly Csikszentmihaly discusses the idea of “flow” where the experience itself is a joy in which we lose track of time and sometimes even place. We’re in the zone facing an optimal problem with equal wit and intelligence to match the challenge.  And having a clear goal and purpose are essential to flow. Essentially, high task, matched with high skill level equals the state of flow. Too little skill with high task equals anxiety and too much skill level with too little task equals boredom. Paradoxically people have more flow experiences at work than at leisure. And children who were punished by having to go to recess and rewarded for doing well by being given more schoolwork opted for the schoolwork. Reframing school works. The author asks a simple but profound question: Where or when are you in a state of flow?

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