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“From the rich experience that our senses

bring, we construct the ideas, the concepts,

the generalizations that give the meaning
and order to our lives”
Read the following testimonies
 “the meanings of negative discrimination
index and positive discrimination index
became crystal clear to me only when we
did an item analysis of our test items
- Grade VI teacher
 “It was only when I went to the Manila Zoo
that I learned that a giraffe is that tall and
an elephant is that big.”
- Grade 4 pupil
 My husband and children used to do computer job
for me which made me totally dependent on them.
The problem was they were not always around to
help me with my reports, lecture notes, etc. To
redeem myself from my helplessness, I forced
myself to learn, first of all encoding, then sending e-
mail and surfing the internet. What encouraged me
was my seven year old grand daughter could do what
I was not capable of doing. Now I feel liberated. I
can encode and print my lectures, send emails, surf
the internet, and do powerpoint presentation, even
when no one is around to help only after I had to do
these things myself
- Graduate School Professor
 My boss assigned me to put the transparencies on
the plate of the overhead projector while he
delivered his lecture on stage. It turned out that the
first transparency was not positioned upright for
the audience. I repositioned the transparency but
it was still inverted. I felt nervous and the woman
in the audience who was seated nearby came to my
rescue. I have never forgotten that experience but
having been assigned the task repeatedly, I can say
I am now expert at the OHP.
- Secretary to the Dean
Discussion Questions:
 Do you have a similar experience? Share
 Think of a skill you have. How did you
acquire it?
 Think of a concept. How did you learn it?
What are referred to as direct, purposeful
 These are our concrete and first hand
experiences that make up the foundation of
our learning.
 These are the rich experiences that our
senses bring from which we construct the
ideas, the concepts, the generalizations that
give meaning and order to our lives (Dale,
Example of direct activities:
 Preparing meals
 Making a piece of furniture
 Performing a laboratory experiment
 Delivering a speech
 Taking a trip
In contrast, indirect experiences are
experience of other… people that we
observe, read or hear about. They are not
our experiences but still experiences in the
sense that we see, read and hear about
them. They are not first hand but rather
Climbing a mountain is first hand,
direct experience. Seeing it done in
films or reading about it is vicarious,
substitute experiment. It is clear
therefore, that we can approach the
world of reality through the senses and
indirectly with reduced sensory
Why are these direct experiences
described to be purposeful?
 They are experiences that are internalized
in the sense that these experiences involve
the asking of questions that have
significance in the life of the person
undergoing the direct experience.
 These experiences are undergone in relation
to a purpose, i.e. learning
 It is done in relation to a certain learning
John Dewey has made his fundamental
point succinctly:
“An ounce of experience is better than a ton of
theory because it is only in experience that a theory
has vital and verifiable significance. An experience,
a very humble experience, is capable of generating
and carrying an amount of theory (or intellectual
content), but a theory apart from experience
cannot be definitely grasped as a theory. It tends to
render thinking, or genuine theorizing unnecessary
and impossible”
If direct, purposeful experiences or first hand sensory
experiences make us learn concepts and skills effectively,
what does this imply to the teaching- learning process?
1. Let us give our students opportunities to learn by
doing. Let us immerse our students in the world
of experience
2. Let us make use of real things as instructional
materials for as long as we can
3. Let us help our students develop the five senses to
the full to heighten their sensitivity to the world
4. Let us guide our students so that they can draw
meaning from their first hand experiences and
elevate their level of thinking.
Summing Up
 Direct experiences are first hand
experiences that serve as the foundation of
learning. The opposite of direct experiences
are indirect or vicarious experiences
 Direct experiences lead us to concept
formation and abstraction. We should not
end our lessons knowing only the concrete.
We go beyond the concrete by reaching the
level of abstract concepts.
Making the connection
Here is an approximation
70% of how much persons learn
through the five senses.
Connect this graph to
sensory experience to learning.
Take note of the number of
30% senses involved starting with
the base of the cone. Does this
graph relate to what you
learned about direct
purposeful experience? Do you
see any relation or connection?
 Any principle you learned from the
Principles of Teaching that connects to
learning by direct experience?
 Our lack of understanding is often due to
our lack of attention. Our lack of attention
is usually due to a failure in the use of our
senses. Connect this to firsthand of sensory
Emerson wrote:
Seven men went through a field, one after another. One
was a farmer, he saw only the grass; the next was an
astronomer, he saw the horizon and the stars; the physician
noticed the standing water and suspected miasma; he was
followed by a soldier, who glanced over the ground, found it easy
to hold, and saw in a moment how the troops could be disposed;
then came the geologist, who noticed the boulders and the
sandy loam; after him came the real-estate broker, who
bethought him how the line of the houses lots should run, where
would be the driveway, and the stables. The poet admired the
shadows cast by some trees, and still more the music of some
thrushes and the meadow lark.

What does this paragraph imply about people’s interpretation

of the concrete? How can we arrive at a more accurate
interpretation of what we experience?