Deliberate Practise and the Dangerous Child

To Become a Master, Only the Right Type of Practise Will Do

…think about the future of a world that applies deliberate practice on a regular basis and its impact on education, medicine, health, and relationships. Imagine a world where performance in every area of life gets better and better. __ C

Deliberate Practise, to be Specific

Deliberate practice is when you work on a skill that requires 1 to 3 practice sessions to master. If it takes longer than that, then you are working on something that is too complex.

Once you master this tiny behavior, you can move on to practicing the next small task that will take 1 to 3 sessions to master. Repeat this process for 10,000 hours. That is deliberate practice. __ Kathy Sierra (2012) as quoted by James Clear

There is a lot more to “deliberate practise” than breaking complex tasks into masterable pieces. But any coach, tutor, or instructor must understand how to “break things down” for each individual learner — who will usually put them together himself, once having mastered the pieces in the proper way, in good order. More complex skills are built upon the simpler skills that preceded them.

Deliberate Practise is Smart Practise
Deliberate Practise is Smart Practise

Is Mastery Innate or Acquired?

Some level of talent and ability must be present to give the learner a starting foundation. And the more natural talent, the more quickly the student can progress — at least in particular phases of the training. The mistake that is too often made is attempting to train so quickly that crucial fundamental skills and competencies are left out of the process. This mistake is most often made in training those who appear most talented in the beginning, who then expect everything that comes afterward to be easy.

when scientists began measuring the experts’ supposedly superior powers of speed, memory and intelligence with psychometric tests, no general superiority was found — the demonstrated superiority was domain specific. For example, the superiority of the chess experts’ memory was constrained to regular chess positions and did not generalize to other types of materials (Djakow, Petrowski & Rudik, 1927). Not even IQ could distinguish the best among chessplayers (Doll & Mayr, 1987) nor the most successful and creative among artists and scientists (Taylor, 1975). In a recent review, Ericsson and Lehmann (1996) found that (1) measures of general basic capacities do not predict success in a domain, (2) the superior performance of experts is often very domain specific and transfer outside their narrow area of expertise is surprisingly limited and (3) systematic differences between experts and less proficient individuals nearly always reflect attributes acquired by the experts during their lengthy training. __ K. Anders Ericsson

Of course we would not expect IQ to be the deciding factor in distinguishing among elite chess players, artists or scientists. If one is looking exclusively at elite levels, several other factors come into play that are more likely to distinguish the best of the best other than a score on an IQ test. Ambition, persistence, sustained energy levels and reserves, smart practise, ego strength to break out of consensual groupthink, conscientiousness, emotional stability and control, and many other qualities that augment and reinforce simple cognitive skills when moving from simple mastery to innovative mastery.

More on deliberate practise:

Deliberate practice is different from work, play and simple repetition of a task. It requires effort, it has no monetary reward, and it is not inherently enjoyable.

When you engage in deliberate practice, improving your performance over time is your goal and motivation. __ Source

Whether deliberate practise is inherently enjoyable or not, is likely to depend upon the person and how his deliberate practise is designed and carried out.

The recent advances in our understanding of the complex representations, knowledge and skills that mediate the superior performance of experts derive primarily from studies where experts are instructed to think aloud while completing representative tasks in their domains, such as chess, music, physics, sports and medicine (Chi, Glaser & Farr, 1988; Ericsson & Smith, 1991; Starkes & Allard, 1993). For appropriate challenging problems experts don’t just automatically extract patterns and retrieve their response directly from memory. Instead they select the relevant information and encode it in special representations in working memory that allow planning, evaluation and reasoning about alternative courses of action (Ericsson & Lehmann, 1996). Hence, the difference between experts and less skilled subjects is not merely a matter of the amount and complexity of the accumulated knowledge; it also reflects qualitative differences in the organization of knowledge and its representation (Chi, Glaser & Rees, 1982). Experts’ knowledge is encoded around key domain-related concepts and solution procedures that allow rapid and reliable retrieval whenever stored information is relevant. Less skilled subjects’ knowledge, in contrast, is encoded using everyday concepts that make the retrieval of even their limited relevant knowledge difficult and unreliable. Furthermore, experts have acquired domain-specific memory skills that allow them to rely on long-term memory (Long-Term Working Memory, Ericsson & Kintsch, 1995) to dramatically expand the amount of information that can be kept accessible during planning and during reasoning about alternative courses of action. The superior quality of the experts’ mental representations allow them to adapt rapidly to changing circumstances and anticipate future events in advance. The same acquired representations appear to be essential for experts’ ability to monitor and evaluate their own performance (Ericsson, 1996; Glaser, 1996) so they can keep improving their own performance by designing their own training and assimilating new knowledge.

__ K. Anders Ericsson

Pioneering 1993 PDF paper by Ericsson on Deliberate Practise

Professor Ericsson recently published a book on the topic of deliberate practice, entitled “Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise.”

Book Outline by Chapter:

Introduction

The opening question “Why are some people so amazingly good at what they do?” sets the stage for the whole book. Ever since I was in third grade I’ve read biographies and autobiographies to understand how people achieved great success. I was always more interested in learning about the journey than to know what it was like on the mountaintop. This book explains in detail the journey that expert performers go on to reach the mountaintop.

Chapter One

This chapter explains the value of purposeful practice.in expanding your physical and mental capacity for generating greater achievements in the future. It emphasizes the importance of taking small steps on a regular basis and gathering feedback on what you are doing effectively and ineffectively.

Chapter Two

Here you will learn how to specifically harness your mental adaptability to develop new skills and move beyond the status quo way of doing things. It also explains how your potential is not fixed, but rather is something that can be continually expanded.

Chapter Three

You learn the importance of mental representations, of actually seeing the level of performance that you are aspiring to reach. By visualizing the details of what needs to happen, you are able to see the pieces and patterns that are necessary for a great performance.

Chapter Four

This chapter explains in great detail the steps involved in deliberate practice, which is the absolute best way to improve your performance in any type of activity. I would try to explain my interpretation of deliberate practice here, but I think you would benefit a great deal more by really studying this chapter and learning the insights that Anders Ericsson developed over a lifetime of studying deliberate practice.

Chapter Five

A great explanation of how deliberate practice can be used in actual job situations regardless of the type of work that you do. I’ve found in my executive coaching sessions that guiding people through the steps of deliberate practice and showing how the principles of deliberate practice connect with their work situations helps them to move forward in a more intentional and effective way.

Chapter Six

This chapter shows how deliberate practice can be applied in everyday life situations whether you’re exercising, parenting, or enjoying a hobby. Literally anything you do you can learn to do it better the next time.

Chapter Seven

If you were ever wondering what it takes for a young person to go on to be world-class in any activity, this chapter explains what is involved. And it’s not for the faint of heart. Literally thousands and thousands of hours of deliberate practice over many years are required to become the best of the best at what you do. But if you’re goal is to be world-class, then this chapter explains how to do it.

Chapter Eight

This chapter explodes the myth of natural talent. It shows in detail that great performers always got there through extraordinary practice.

Chapter Nine

In this closing chapter, Ericsson and Pool guide the reader to think about the future of a world that applies deliberate practice on a regular basis and its impact on education, medicine, health, and relationships. Imagine a world where performance in every area of life gets better and better. They close their book with a new concept, Homo exercens rather than Homo sapiens. They wrote, “Perhaps a better to see ourselves would be as Homo exercens, or ‘practicing man,’ the species that takes control of its life through practice and makes of itself what it will.”

__ http://www.thecoughlincompany.com/cc_vol14_12a/

Chapter 9 of Ericsson and Pool’s book suggests that a world that applies deliberate practise regularly, would be a better world in many ways. That is probably true. But in the modern world where virtually every institution of government, education, media, foundations, and other cultural institutions are irredeemably corrupt and self-serving, how can productive disruptive change be implemented on a broad scale?

The answer is, it probably cannot be implemented on a broad scale in any meaningful sense — without dumbing it down to impotence.

Sure, if a billionaire such as Sergey Brin, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Tom Steyer, Richard Branson, or one of the other “usual suspects” would stop squandering resources on delusional green boondoggles, and begin to invest on the future minds and competencies of new generations, things would likely change. But such billionaires — and virtually all men of power and influence — are corrupted by the taint of groupthink and government rent-seeking. Institutional rot exists not only in large institutions, but also infects all products and forms of output from such institutions.

What is to be done, then? What indeed.

Hope for the best. Prepare for the worst. It is never too late to have a Dangerous Childhood. Best to start the formation of networked Dangerous Communities as soon as practicable.

More:

http://www.braintrainingtools.org/skills/how-to-learn-new-skills/
http://www.braintrainingtools.org/skills/how-to-learn-new-skills/

On Choosing to Send One’s Child to Prison, Instead of College

The following article was previously published on Al Fin, the Next Level

Think of Prison as a Preparation for Life After TEOTWAWKI
Think of Prison as a Preparation for Life After TEOTWAWKI

College is becoming more and more expensive. But the advantages of going to college are diminishing by the year.
College Costs vs Benefits Trend
College Costs vs Benefits Trend

After TEOTWAWKI — The End of The World As We Know It — your kids will need an entirely different skill set than the ones that are being taught in college.

And just what is being taught in college? How to binge, fornicate, become indoctrinated in counter-productive ideology (academic lobotomy), and how to live well on borrowed money while avoiding responsibility as long as you can?

Modern economies are built upon the predictable movement of young people into positions of responsibility. The child is supposed to grow up and learn to make a living, get married, get a mortgage, raise children, and teach his own children to follow the same responsible path through life. The entire social security net welfare society is based upon this predictable trajectory.

But something happened on the way to a perpetual motion welfare state utopia. College-educated students are going so deeply into debt that they cannot afford to pay back their student loans — much less take out mortgages and raise families. A greater and greater number of them are moving back in with their parents.

Less and less money and credit available for mortgages and raising families
Less and less money and credit available for mortgages and raising families

Not only are student loans preventing indebted students from moving on with their lives, they have grown to such a size that they are creating a growing drag on the entire US economy.

Students across the country are trapped by their debts and often unable to take advantage of the freedom that a college degree should theoretically afford them.

… Student debt doesn’t just weigh heavily on graduates. Evidence is growing that student loans may be dragging down the overall economy, not just individuals. Think about it this way: if students have significant debts, it means they’re less likely to spend money on other goods and services, and it also means they’re less likely to take out a mortgage on a house. Consumer purchasing is the primary driver of the U.S. economy, and mortgages and auto loans play a huge role as well. __ http://business.time.com/2014/02/26/student-loans-are-ruining-your-life-now-theyre-ruining-the-economy-too/

Overdue Loan Payments Eventually Drag an Economy Down
Overdue Loan Payments Eventually Drag an Economy Down

How much are these over-educated dead-beats driving down the US economy? No one knows, because the people who maintain the numbers don’t want you to know. And the people who should be holding the government’s feet to the fire to keep us informed — the media — are not doing their jobs.

Going to prison voluntarily, on the other hand, does not require taking out loans. And the skill sets that your children can learn in prison will make them better suited for the “survival of the fittest” world after TEOTWAWKI.

Prisons are full of rough men, and so will the world be after TEOTWAWKI — also known as when TSHTF. After TSHTF your children will need to know how to deal with rough men and rough women, and they will need to have many of the same skills that rough men and rough women have.

Live Off the Grid -- Tiny House Talk
Live Off the Grid — Tiny House Talk

If you have the skills to separate from government services, you can live free with your mind and your life still yours to do with as you choose.

But few people want to cut all their strings and fly free — particularly if they do not have either enormous assets or unlimited skills from which to draw. Most people do not want to live off the grid in a converted school bus, no matter how luxuriously it may be fitted out, nor are they entirely comfortable with the idea of sending their children to prison for TEOTWAWKI training.

For those more discriminating folk, we are devising the Al Fin Dangerous Child Method of Education and Child Raising. The Dangerous Child has all the benefits and positive skills of a prison term, plus all the useful knowledge and social skills of a broad based university education. But he doesn’t have all those lifelong debilitating (and sometimes deadly) viruses that often hike along with a person who spends too much time in prison or college.

And rather than accumulating a lifetime’s debt, the Dangerous Child masters at least three distinct ways of supporting himself financially, before he celebrates his 18th birthday. If he wanted a mortgage, he could have it, but he is more likely to build his own house — or pay cash for one already built.

So there you see the three choices:

  1. College
  2. Prison
  3. Dangerous Child

It is your choice. Consider carefully, since you will have to live with your decision for a long time.

But seriously,

Charles Murray: Too Many Students Going to College
Not enough students learning practical trades and other practical skills.

10 Smart Things I Learned from People who Never Went to College

Abolishing Academic Lobotomies

Altucher’s rather conventional 8 alternatives to college

Military Service: A Forgotten Choice

Al Fin blog “Education” label

Note: The above article is labeled “satire.” But if you replace the word “prison” with “a skilled apprenticeship” in the dangerous trades, “a military enlistment,” intense training in firefighting, EMS, or other hard core occupation, you will better understand the underlying intent.

Where is Best Place to Raise Dangerous Children: City or Countryside?

First Consider Merits of City vs. Country in General

Advantages of City Life

  1. Easy access to schools, shopping, eating, work, and public services
  2. Wide variety of housing, jobs, special interest groups and classes, entertainments, potential friends, and potential mates
  3. In some cities you can walk everywhere or take public transport
  4. Cosmopolitan selection of foods, shopping, shows, and people

Disadvantages of City Life

  1. A general decadence and decay — particularly in cities with a higher proportion of third world peoples
  2. Ever shrinking zones of safety, as a dysgenic decline sets in
  3. Living on borrowed time in the coming dysgenic Idiocracy

City vs. Country David Holmes Youtube.com
City vs. Country David Holmes
Youtube.com

Advantages of Country Life

  1. Peace and quiet, a sky full of stars, fresh sweet air
  2. People look out for each other
  3. People are generally more self-sufficient
  4. Taxes are lower, as are many other expenses
  5. More safe zones — especially for kids

Disadvantages of Country Life

  1. You must learn to get along with neighbors, and to keep a good reputation in the community, or things can become brusque
  2. You must learn to maintain your own basic infrastructure for clean water, backup power, heat, fuel, housing, outbuildings, essential machinery, growth storage and preparation of food, etc.
  3. You will have to learn more about technology of all kinds
  4. You will need to learn to let your younger children do a lot of free-grazing (and teach them to do so safely)
  5. You will need to teach practical skills to your mid-level kids early, and insist they learn and perform them properly
  6. You will need to respect your neighbor’s religion
  7. And so on . . .

Sources:
https://alfinnextlevel.wordpress.com/2013/10/12/living-in-the-city-vs-living-in-the-countryside/

http://www.theprofessionalhobo.com/2008/09/city-life-vs-country-life-an-unbiased-analysis/

http://www.debate.org/opinions/is-country-life-better-than-city-life

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/aug/18/live-in-city-or-country

In summary, one suspects that it may be easier to find a mate in university, church, work etc. inside or outside of cities, but better to raise kids outside of the decadent and corrupting world of cities, if possible.

How this Applies to Raising Dangerous Children in Particular

Young and very young Dangerous Children should not be allowed to plug into the addicting world of the Consensual Delusion. There is too much of crucial importance to learn, too many practical and foundational skills to develop, and too little real estate inside the growing brain to be spared for wasteful and dysfunctional mental memes of the skankstream.

Keeping a rapidly developing Dangerous Child on track from the earliest ages, requires providing a rich and nutritious mental world, without the addicting and destructive “junk food.” A healthier mental and physical environment is easier to provide outside the loud, dirty, and dysfunctional distractions that are so prevalent in cities — particularly the more multicultural cities-in-decline.

The basic in-your-face needs of country living demand more of children in the first place. A child growing up on a ranch, farm, or helping with the family business, will have to develop a range of basic skills which helicopter-parented city kids will never be exposed to — unless they move to the country themselves. So in that sense, self-sufficiency — a key part of the Dangerous Child attitude — is an intrinsic part of a good country upbringing.

Many of semi-dangerous skills learned by 10-12 year olds are readily available in the country: Welding, electrical motors and pumps, all types of electrical wiring methods, plumbing systems, backup power supplies, power tools of all kinds, heavy machinery (including implements for digging, ploughing, earth-moving, demolition, etc.).

When Dangerous Children get together on their own, they are likely to want to hunt, fish, build or repair, or practise dangerous skills in the outdoors.

Understanding how dangerous the human world is becoming, they feel an important, underlying purpose growing inside of them as they age and gain more useful skills and life competencies. They understand that if humans are to build a more expansive and abundant human future, a good part of the human substrate will have to be up to the challenges ahead.

The skankstream cathedral — working within the consensual delusion — has been hard at work attempting to destroy or corrupt the traditional ways in which children might be allowed to grow up both dangerous and responsible. The skankstream would rather have kids grow up stuck in a perpetually helpless adolescent state, dependent upon the skankstream for virtually all of their needs.

Note: It is possible that for some parents and offspring, raising a Dangerous Child is best done in the war zone of a multicultural inner city. If the child can be protected to the age that he can take care of himself on the mean streets, living in the middle of a dysgenic Idiocracy may provide some of the best lessons he will ever learn.

But in general, such experiences can be provided just as well in the more controlled setting of planned field trips into the city. One must be confronted with such dysfunction face to face in order to understand and better prepare for it, well before any in-city apprenticeships, work, or higher education.

The Dangerous Child Method is not easily applied, nor will it come naturally to large numbers of today’s young citizens, parents, and potential parents. That is why we have decided to go semi-public with many of these ideas, so that the wiser of the young will have a bit of time to prepare and debate the issues.

More: https://alfinnextlevel.wordpress.com/2015/10/23/urban-world-utopia-or-global-dysgenic-idiocracy/

Hope for the best. Prepare for the worst. To survive the coming world, you and yours will want to become Dangerous.



Town & Country  Lord of the Rings https://learningfrommiltonkeynes.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/lordoftowncountry.jpg
Town & Country Lord of the Rings
https://learningfrommiltonkeynes.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/lordoftowncountry.jpg

More: Parenting in the suburbs is lonely for housewives whose lives have no purpose . . . It is the story of modernity — adrift in alienation without a rudder or destination. These housewives should consider becoming Dangerous Children.

It is never too late to have a Dangerous Childhood.

Teach Them to Teach Themselves

The key to a better future is new generations of dangerous children who have learned to teach themselves. We expect adults, graduate students, and more mature university students and adolescents to be able to teach themselves. But we do not expect younger children to know how to teach themselves — and that is one of the biggest mistakes we have made over the past century and a half.

We can no longer afford to make the expensive mistakes of the past, not if we want new generations to have a future worth living. The excerpts below are borrowed from Dr. Arthur Robinson’s website, provided with commentary:

Learning is not a team sport. Learning is an activity that involves solely the student and the knowledge. Everything or everyone else that may become involved in this process is essentially superfluous—and is potentially harmful as a distraction from the fundamental process.

Dr. Robinson home-schooled six young children on a ranch in Oregon. Most of the Robinson Curriculum was developed after the untimely death of Robinson’s young wife and mother of six.

Adults ordinarily do not have special teaching aids and dedicated teachers available to hold their hands when they need to acquire new knowledge. Usually, they have only books. When the knowledge comes directly from other repositories such as computers, people, or other sources, that knowledge is seldom tailored for spoon—feeding to an unprepared mind.

Robinson is referring to the self-teaching that adults do to improve themselves, at all hours, around the world. Most effective learning is done for oneself.

Since certain skills need to be acquired at an early age—particularly mathematics and reading, writing, and thinking in one’s native language—it is sensible to arrange the homeschool so that learning these essential skills will automatically lead to the development of good study habits. This is one reason that self—teaching homeschools have a special value.

Dr. Robinson is referring to sensitive periods of development for a variety of important areas of learning. If this time is dithered away on cartoons, video games, or other frivolous play, the child will not have learned either the knowledge, or how to teach himself for learning future knowledge.

Consider, for example, the teaching of math and science. Many homeschools use Saxon Math. Although produced with teachers and classrooms in mind, this series of math books is so well—written that it can be mastered by most students entirely on their own without any teacher intervention whatever. This self—mastery usually does not happen automatically, but it can be learned by almost any student with correct study rules and a good study environment.

The parent who wishes for his children to self-teach is not alone. Many decades of work have been put into devising ways of building young minds to higher and higher levels of self sufficiency in learning and action.

While the subject matter [ed: Saxon math], can be mastered with or without a teacher, the student who masters it without a teacher learns something more. He learns to teach himself. Then, when he continues into physics, chemistry, and biology—which are studied in their own special language, the language of mathematics—he is able to teach these subjects to himself regardless of whether or not a teacher with the necessary specialized knowledge is present. Also, he is able to make use of much higher—quality texts — texts written for adults.

Robinson points out something that should never be overlooked: children need to teach themselves to read and communicate on an adult level. This will open many doors of opportunity.

Besides the great advantage of developing good study habits and thinking ability, self—teaching also has immediate practical advantages. Many children should be able, through Advanced Placement examinations, to skip over one or more years of college. The great saving in time and expense from this is self—evident. These and other comparable accomplishments await most children who learn to self—teach and then apply this skill to their home education.

With the cost of university these days, it is important to develop ways of reducing costs — and of raising funds, something that is emphasised in The Dangerous Child Method.

Even children of lesser ability can, by means of self—teaching and good study habits, achieve far more than they otherwise would have accomplished by the more ordinary techniques.

This is a crucial point to get across in this new age of a dawning realisation that “all men are NOT created equal.” Although some will not achieve as much as others, it is important to help as many as possible to achieve as high a goal as they are willing and able to aim for.

Self—teaching is an “extraordinary” technique today, but it was ordinary in the past, when most of the great scholars in human history learned in a similar way.

This is an excellent point, which is made very clear by John Taylor Gatto and Joseph Kett (Rites of Passage).

Self—teaching, excellent study habits, and a well—disciplined approach to independent thought are characteristics of these people… These are skills that can be taught to any child. When your eight—year—old child is all alone at his large desk in a quiet room with his Saxon 65 book and has been there three hours already—with most of that time spent in childhood daydreams —and says, “Mommy, I don’t know how to work this problem,” give him a wonderful gift. Simply reply, “Then you will need to keep studying until you can work the problem.”

How else will you teach your child self discipline? The child must learn to do things for himself, starting with learning.

For a while his progress may be slow. Speed will come with practice. Eventually, he will stop asking questions about how to do his assignments and will sail along through his lessons without help.

These study habits can then spill over into the other subjects—with astonishing results.

The above excerpts were borrowed from “Teach Them to Teach Themselves,” contained in The Robinson Curriculum. Much more information at the website.

The Robinson Curriculum is several giant steps above government schooling. It should prove useful for many parents who are struggling to come up with an alternative approach to learning, other than the government approach that too often leads to drugs, delinquency, teen pregnancy, lifelong incompetence, tons of disinformation that will be difficult to unlearn, and a perpetual tendency toward groupthink dependencies.

Government schooling can be supplemented at home using creative exercises, tutoring, and a gentle correction of disinformation and bad — or non-existent — learning methods. In that sense, one would be using government schools as a risky type of daycare. If the child has already learned to be dangerous, that might work.