What is it exactly?
Education is a series of steps taken to acquire or provide facts, information, descriptions or skills from a particular particular start and delivering them, making them known and understood to a particular end.
Example 1: The use of tools by early humans has always been viewed as a sign of intelligence. Researchers suggest that early hominins were under evolutionary pressure to increase their capacity to create and use tools — this was one form of surviving.
They had to learn to create these tools, learn to use them and they did all that without a YouTube video tutorial. Early humans had to learn the skills for survival, but what is learning without teaching? Through learning, they had to teach themselves the skills of survival.
Example 2: In 1997, on February 28, the North Hollywood shootout took place. It was between two heavily armed bank robbers and members of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). It is one of the most tragic shootouts the world has ever seen.
What’s so interesting about this shootout is what investigators found in the apartment of the bank robbers. Inside a video player was a tape about the 1995 movie ‘Heat’ — a movie about a group of professional bank robbers. The North Hollywood robbers were watching the movie to learn about robbery.
Just like early humans, the two Hollywood robbers saw it necessary to learn certain skills from a movie for a successful bank robbery. Through learning they taught themselves some skills about robbery.
Conclusion: Prior to both experiences, these two groups (early humans and the Hollywood robbers) had in their space some information and skills that they wanted to acquire. Each of them had their own way of doing this — For early humans, breaking and carving stones led to the creation of tools. For the Hollywood robbers, watching that movie, pausing, rewinding over and over gave them the skills and the information they saw adequate to rob a bank.
What the Hollywood robbers needed (facts, information, descriptions, skills) was put in a video tape (particular start), they had to have a video player to move what they needed from that video tape to their brains (particular end).
The following is a diagram of education.
Education is fairly simple to understand — it’s a series of steps taken to move facts, information, descriptions or skills from point A(particular start) to point B(particular end).
Mduduzi Mbiza is a writer, content strategist, researcher, consultant, speaker and author of the book, ‘Human Education: The Voyage of Discovery’. He has contributed his articles on education to Daily Maverick, The South African, Voice360 and EduOne.