Meet Ima Learner, A Member Of Your Class

A Learners’ View (ALV) Is Of Choices On The Shortest And Fastest Path To Learning, The Oxygen Of Social Life.


Main Article: Classic Education: A Learners’ View (ALV) of Choices during Teaching and Learning

Theme: Learners choose how they learn.


HI, TEACH. My name is Ima Learner. You know me as Aike, Keisha, Jorge, Ahmed, Kim, and with other names of people in and out of your classes.  I personify the minimum (without inference, interpretation, nuance or decoration) of what is common across more than a century of experimental behavioral and social science research descriptions of learning.

I am a learners’ view (ALV) of learning. I want to help you accelerate, increase, and deepen (AID) learning promptly and sometimes dramatically.

We’ve met. I’m each student in your classroom or other person trying to learn something from you. I’ve enjoyed working with you. To the extent your students learn from how you teach, you use me to teach.

Together, we can improve your odds of gaining learners’ attention against distractions. Scientists report that attention begins what I call the ALV Path to learning. Staying on that path helps you to manage the risk of your students failing to learn your lessons. When students fail to learn lessons, you loose the gamble you made with their time and other resources you assigned to your instruction. When learners fail to learn your lessons, I say you rationed learning. Instead, let’s accelerate, increase, and deepen (AID) learning promptly as I trust you intend to do, since you are a teacher.


1.0 Teacher

I hope you’re a 1.0 teacher or striving to earn that rating. The 1.0 means that all of your students learn everything you teach. Yes, you can likely earn nearer to or that 1.0 rating this year, if you match your lessons to what behavioral and social scientists describe that learners do while learning. These scientists have set a useful standard for planning, offering, and auditing instruction of lessons. Apply what I say and show ya, so ya can try to earn a 1.0. What I tell you is fact, among the most rigorously identified and described facts available about learning. It’s not belief, opinion, theory, or guess.

Two Rules

From a learners’ view, here are two basic rules for AIDing learning in your classroom.

  1. You choose what, where, and when learning should occur.
  2. I choose if and how learners will learn from your choices and how they benefit learners to do so. Granting you permission to teach me begins my learning.

Please respect that teaching and learning are that simple!

Solving Problems

For me, learning is solving new problems to learners’ benefit. Problems fit into five categories:

  1. What is it? (Name it. Describe it. Say what it does. Show me what it does. Find it among other things, as in a multiple choice test.)
  2. What is like it? (Name, show, or tell me something that looks like it. That works like it. That produces the same result.)
  3. What is not like it? (Name, show, or tell me something that looks, works, or produces different results.)
  4. What comes next? (Name, show, or tell me something that comes next in this sequence.)
  5. What is missing? (Name, show, or tell me what is missing from this sequence.)

To solve these problems, I look and listen for you to tell or show me the specific vocabulary, logic, and ways the most accomplished people use to solve them. Each problem is a lesson for me, even when you say your lesson is something else.


Learners use trial-and-errors through as many as 15 choice points to learn something, to solve each problem. The more trial-and-errors, the less likely it is that a learner will learn from your lesson. Please, don’t play hide-and-seek with ways to learn from your lessons, unless that game is the crucial point of a lesson. Learners pay the cost for learning your lessons with time, effort, and other personal resources. Hide-and-seek in lessons can ration learning.

Three Questions of Learners

To learn during each lesson, learners try to answer three questions:

  1. What do I have to do?
  2. What do I get for doing it? and
  3. What will it cost (in time, effort, material goods) me to learn it?

Teachers answer these questions for yourselves when you offer lessons. Learners choose whether or not to answer these questions to learn your lessons. People learn your lessons when your choices match learners’ choices.

Elements of Learning

Researchers have described elements of social patterns that form hierarchies of physical sensations to which learners will most likely respond, next most likely, etc. For example, learners likely see novelty before sameness, motion before something static, red before blue, notice the difference between a contrasting and dominant sounds. Such descriptions clarify choices learners will likely make while learning.

Starting Class

Use me in the first 20 seconds of each class session to capture each learner’s attention for your first lesson. I have just 3,000 seconds in each 50 minute class period with you. The fewer seconds you use to show and tell me what is relevant in each lesson, the quicker I will solve the problem in your lesson.

Please be accurate and precise. This way, more learning results from your lessons. After all, we only have a limited number of seconds together. Nobody can get any seconds back, so please, don’t waste them and thus ration my learning.

I learned that from preschool, kindergarten, first and seventh grades, and two high school teachers who attracted my attention immediately. Each school day, they stood at the doorway, looked each student in the eyes, welcomed them into their classrooms and immediately started the lesson. One of these teachers was in one of the lowest academic performing schools in the state; the other was in one of the best academic schools in the same state. Each of these teachers obtained nearer 1.0 ratings than do most teachers.


If you’re open to a suggestion, use me to plan and instruct a string of 20 second lessons for each class session. Start the first lesson as learners enter your classroom. Learners can learn more that way. When you use me to teach, learners will show and tell you by their responses how to adjust your lessons in order to AID learning promptly.


Respectfully, and bluntly, please, do not interpret what I say or say what you think I mean. I say what I mean, and mean what I say. I’m that simple. If you have not yet earned or nearly earned a 1.0 rating, then you know what interpretations get you and your students.

Stop using words like belief, thinking, cognition, developmental stages, meaning, knowledge, understanding, attitude, and so forth when planning lessons for and talking about me. These are interpretations and inferences about learning, not descriptions of what you can verify that learners do to learn. Your learners may learn sometimes when you use those words to plan lessons or to talk about us to other people. Chances for using them to AID learning is probably like flipping a coin or worse. They’re for a 0.5 teacher over time.

If you doubt me, look at your record of successful lessons where everyone in class learned everything in your lessons. Now, compare results from your lessons that apply what learners do to learn. Are both a perfect 1.0?


You’ve got lists of problems for me to learn to solve in your school’s curriculum guide, state standards, and exams. Tell me how many seconds I have, on average, to learn to solve each problem in order to learn everything on those lists. Offer lessons that take me no longer than that average.

Just teach the facts on those lists. I’ll generalize to what you call “meaning” by the way you arrange problems for me to solve. That’s the way it is for learners like you and me, Teach.

Be That 1.0 Teacher of Your Dreams

I want you to be a 1.0 Teacher. I want learners to learn something from you each moment we’re together. I hear and read about teachers, acting as learners, saying you want to learn something that is promptly helpful from your professional development and other school meetings you attend. Learners and their supporters expect you to meet with your teaching the same standard you set for yourself at these meetings.

So, best wishes to both of us for a year of promptly learning more than either of us have accomplished before in your classroom. Let’s make this a 1.0 year for you, Teach. Is it a deal? And, don’t forget, a learners’ view is of choices you and I both make on the shortest and fastest path to learning.


  1. 1.0 Teacher
  2. Active Ingredients of Learning (AIL)
  3. A Learners’ View of Choices
  4. A Learners’ View (ALV) of Learning
  5. ALV Path to Learning
  6. Checklists for Educators rev. 2.0
  7. Conditional Permission to Teach
  8. If You Could See Me (with video)
  9. Learning as Problem Solving
  10. Living in a Learners World
  11. Performance Standard for Educators
  12. Rationed Learning
  13. STOP RISKS of Failure to Learn
  14. Yes, if…

Related Reading

  1. 10 Signs You May Be Rationing Learning
  2. 20 Second Lesson Module
  3. ALV (a Learners’ View) in a Nutshell
  4. A Learners’ View (ALV) is not a Learner’s View
  5. Cascade of Questions of Ima Learner
  6. First 20 Seconds of each Class Session
  7. Interviews and Conversations
  8. Managing Classroom Clutter
  9. NESI (New Era School Initiative) Conversation 10: Rationed Learning: Yes, but… Revisited
  10. New Era School Initiative (NESI) Press Release
  11. Rules of Teaching: Digest
  12. String of 20 Second Lesson Modules
  13. Teachers Do the Hokey Pokey
  14. Three Categories of Choices while Learning
  15. What is a 1.0 Teacher?

Last Update: June 20, 2016