You can Learn Anything

Anyone Can Learn Anything

Are there some people who intrinsically cannot learn? Are there some people who can only learn some things? I don’t think so. In fact, I think anyone can learn anything under the right circumstances.

For all those who struggle with one subject or another, this may seem improbable or even utterly wrong. We all feel more adept in some areas than other ones. We all know how difficult, how impossible, learning math can seem for many.

But even if we lack definitive research to prove this notion of human potential, liberated from cultural and socioeconomic constraints, imagine what doors open if we fully embraced the possibility. Imagine if we treat this notion that anyone can learn anything as a first principle, a responsibility to recognize and serve.

The implications are enormous, challenging educators and other policymakers to rethink the design of our schools and classrooms, and encouraging everyone who gave up on learning something because they believed they lacked the ability to grasp it. As educators, this pushes us to ask how we have failed to create the conditions where our students can learn anything, and to think through the conditions needed to fully support learning so that any student can reach their potential.

It may seem improbable to achieve this goal, but this should not be a reason to ignore it. Quite the contrary, this may be exactly the reason to pursue it. Because once we open up this possibility, we open up a way of thinking that challenges us to find solutions that can enhance teaching and learning.

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