Learning is a toxic environment in schools because memory is assessed to

Learning is a toxic environment in schools because memory is assessed to determine a student’s intellectual ability. This is problematic for individuals with poor working memory as they’re often labelled as failures which can create detrimental mental health impacts. Throughout my life I’ve been described as a determined individual who has a positive and organised approach to learning. I’d like to believe that my learning was inborn, but my middle-class parents also encouraged my learning as they constantly reiterated that acquiring greater knowledge when young will enable me to thrive in a working environment later. This is coupled with support from other authoritative figures like nurses and coaches and being the youngest sibling to two managers (resulting in me to independently explore my skillsets). Therefore, my attitude to learning has enabled me to adapt my previous learned experiences to comprehend to this ever-emerging world (McDermott, 2014: page. 336). But, my goals and strategies used when learning tasks outside formal educational settings have all varied because I’ve been a part of many learning communities and key theoretical perspectives into learning can be used to explain my different approaches. Learning to overcome my phobia of needles:When I was young I developed a phobia of needles (trypanophobia). Yet, I had to quickly learn to overcome this irrational fear after being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus at six. But you must wonder how? My nurse recognised that I was extremely scared about having to adapt to this new lifestyle, so I was advised to stay in hospital for an additional 4 days. I attended multiple private sessions of a face-to-face diabetic course under the NHS where I actively learnt to overcome my phobia. This interactive form of learning was conducted because I was young, and the nurse wanted to ensure that my learning experience was engaging. Firstly, the nurse assessed how severe my phobia of needles was by making me create a fear hierarchy. She presented me with a list of activities like looking at images of needles and then asked me to rank how anxious this made me feel on a scale of 1-10. I ranked these images the lowest compared to other activities like administering a needle. Next, relaxation strategies (deep breathing exercises) were learnt so that I could implement this during each activity. I had to lay on a hospital settee in a quiet room and slowly breathe through my nose and out through my mouth. This was because the DSM-IV (1995) associate this specific phobia with increased heartrate and anxiety.

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