The Praise Paradox: when well-​intended words backfire

Most people would agree: praise is one of the most effective ways to build children’s self-esteem. We are told to be generous with our praise, and to find as many opportunities as possible to praise children so they feel good, learn better, and perform well. It’s such common knowledge, we don’t even question it. But …

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Unbounded learning: how to unshackle your education

While bounded learning is based on a fixed curriculum with specific educational outcomes, unbounded learning embraces the never-ending cycle of personal growth generated by continuous education. It is based on strategies and tools that avoid unnecessary direction and restriction, that foster curiosity, and that reward exploring adjacent questions. Today’s world offers many opportunities for unbounded …

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The educational and economic necessity of lifelong learning

Not so long ago, your career may have looked something like this: study a specific skill at a traditional institution, get a job corresponding to your profile at a company, and grow your knowledge at that company over the course of your career. Sometimes, an expected change may have happened and you might have switched …

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From note-taking to note-making

Note-taking has played an important role in human history. Ancient Greeks used the word hypomnema (ὑπόμνημα) to describe what could be translated as a note, a reminder, or an anecdotal record. Before the development of digital devices, people used marginalia and commonplace books to take notes. Of course, note-taking has been central to education. Students …

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Holiday gift guide for the curious minds

What kind of present can you give to your friend who’s naturally driven by curiosity? For the kind of person who enjoys seeking knowledge and learning new things? This year, not everyone will be able to spend the holiday together, so this gift guide will mainly focus on digital gifts for people who want to …

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How to take notes while reading a book

It’s easier to take notes when we’re listening to content. That’s because our hands are free and we can focus on writing down whatever seems important to remember. However, when reading a book, taking notes interrupts our reading flow. It means there is a fine balance between taking too many notes—and reading extremely slowly—and taking …

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Interview: Using books to navigate life with Juvoni Beckford

A few months ago, a tweet popped up on my timeline, where Juvoni Beckford shared an incredible achievement: reading 450 books over the course of a decade. As someone who loves reading and thinks that everyone would benefit from reading more books—whether fiction or nonfiction—I was understandably impressed by Juvoni’s consistency. Juvoni Beckford is a …

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Adjacent skills: how to widen your career perspective

Gone are the days of linear career trajectories. Most people will live several work lives, and careers have become increasingly mobile. While deep expertise in a given domain can lead to a successful career, it is also a more rigid approach which may limit the number of lateral opportunities. In contrast, adjacent skills can open …

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The science of deliberate practice

According to the Cambridge Dictionary, “practice makes perfect” is “said to encourage someone to continue to do something many times, so that they will learn to do it very well.” But does practice really make perfect? We tend to see practice as tireless repetition of the same task, where the goal is to progressively become …

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Constructive criticism: how to give and receive feedback

Whether in our personal or professional lives, we are constantly giving and receiving feedback. Some of the feedback is subtle, often unconscious, and some of it is proactive. Being able to receive and to offer constructive feedback is an essential skill in building meaningful social relationships.  In addition, research suggests that meaningful feedback is crucial …

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