Sunday, September 07, 2003

Showing not telling, and not thinking about doing

I get the bus to work and it's cheaper to buy a 10-trip ticket than a ticket each trip. The other day I was in a newsagent waiting in line to buy one (you can't buy these tickets on the bus), when I noticed what the guy in front of me, who was also buying one, did.

When I buy one I'll usually roll out the slightly-awkward line "could I get a adult, ten trip, one zone bus ticket thanks". But what this guy did was simply to hold up his old ticket and ask "could I get another one of these?". So simple and (in hindsight) obvious!

Now why didn't I think of that? Actually, I think I can answer that: I (and I think most people) don't really think about the things we're doing as we go about the day to day tasks of our lives. This is also an example of learning by copying, which I think is a far larger component of our learning than is generally recognised.

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