We are all self taught.

You know that moment when a joke becomes funny? The moment when you “get” the punchline.

It’s not something that happens through force of will or conscious effort.

It’s no different than when you suddenly get the solution to a word jumble, a crossword clue, or a riddle.

All the complex machinations required to find those solutions and unlock that understanding are opaque to us, happening deep inside the brain in places we aren’t privy to. That’s where learning happens.

Nobody can make that happen for you. Only your brain can do it. And you don’t even know how your brain does it. Nobody does.

Perhaps the single most important principle in all of education that the role of a teacher is to create the optimal conditions for a student to have these moments of insight, and construct his or her own knowledge. To make the process of teaching ourselves a little more efficient.

And then get the hell out of the way.