Let them stumble, but never let them fall

Being taught has the advantage that you don’t have to go through to process of trail-and-error. Instead of figuring out things yourself, you leverage the experience of those that have come before you. The result is an accelerated learning path.

Knowledge gained through a guided learning is distinctly different from knowledge that is gained through experience. The former does not require full understanding of the underlying concepts. A student can just assume the presented information without questioning the “why”. It is up to the teacher to determine what level of detail should be taught in order for the student to be effective.

You can often spot these gaps of knowledge when mentoring students, but a simply explaining the “why” does not always suffice. Verbally relaying information does not have the same level of retention of experiencing something yourself.

Allowing your students to stumble in a controlled environment will not only allow them learn; it will also ensure they will never do it again.