Learn every day? Don’t we do that already?


Something happens in our house on a nightly basis that I’m sure happens in most houses with kids of a school age. I ask my (soon to be) 5 year old son what he’s done in class that day and wait for the response. It’s usually like trying to get blood from a stone and the inevitable answer is usually what he’s had for lunch from the award-winning school cook or how he’s been chased around the playground with his friends at lunchtime by a boy they’ve christened ‘Broccoli’ due to his green coat.


On rare occasions he’ll tell us what he’s actually learnt – either in class or just in general – like the zones of the ocean and that there are 7 seas because that’s where the pirates sail their ships. But the thing is, we know he is learning because that’s what kids do and why schools exist. Twice a year we get this confirmed at Parent-Teacher evenings and we actually get to see his work.


In our busy lives we don’t often get the chance to reflect and think ‘what have I learnt today?’, but the thing is, as adults the learning doesn’t stop when we finish formal education.


The challenge for the modern learner is not actually the learning, but identifying what they have learnt and recording this somewhere.


Who keeps a learning diary? I know I certainly don’t, but on reflection, here are some things I’ve learnt in the last few days:


  • That the new version of an elearning authoring tool has different publishing settings to the old version but they don’t tell you that
  • That there are some great apps for conferences that allow you to get instant responses from audience members using their phones
  • What the government guidelines are on Competition Law in the UK and the questions employees need to think about to ensure they are street legal
  • How to use a tool that creates really mobile-friendly e-learning content
  • That a well-known electrical retailer sell reasonable priced wifi routers online, but don’t actually hold them in store to make you spend more money
  • That the old £5 note cannot be used after May

 Am I recording this? Well, apart from writing this blog, the answer is a clear “no”. We only record formal learning and in particular things that give you a certificate or a qualification at the end.


Part of my challenge is to use our tools to allow users to record all learning and provide something that fits with Bersin’s 70:20:10 philosophy. The only way to make this work is for the learner to spend time reflecting on what they have learnt and having somewhere to note this down. Unlike the film “Limitless” starring Bradley Cooper where he took a daily pill that allowed him to instantly recall everything he had ever learnt – such as languages and mathematic formulas – we forget 90% of what we learn within a week (source: Art Kohn,, March 2014).


Ask yourself this – do you want to learn more or do you want to recall more of what you learn? If it’s the latter then think about writing things down, taking photographs, talking to others, publishing blogs, recording videos, drawing, using online tools like an LMS or LRS to record new things. All of these will make you see that you are constantly learning from your working life.


(I’ve not written this for a sales pitch, but if you want to try our LRS then get in touch!)

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