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Collaborative problem solving for community safety
Collaborative problem solving for community safety

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1.2 Using your everyday experiences

You will now be aware that a great deal of learning takes place in our ‘ordinary’ lives. So let’s start to examine some of the things you probably do every day, without even recognising that they are tools that help you to learn.

Social scientist Neil Thompson (Thompson, 2005) suggests that knowledge and skills can be developed in the following six ways:

  • Reading
  • Asking
  • Watching
  • Feeling
  • Talking
  • Thinking

Combining some of these approaches helps to build a more rounded picture of a topic or of a skill that you are trying to acquire or develop. For example, reading an article in a magazine might lead to talking through the ideas with friends or colleagues, asking how they might do things differently and why. This in turn might encourage you to think about the way you normally approach similar situations, and then to try a different approach. Further reflection on whether or not it works for you and why (or why not) can be a valuable source of learning.