My Unique Autonomous Learning Method



At first, I got a checklist to help me know what to do. I would grab a piece of paper and write my plans on there – after I finished a plan I would check the box. But after I finished my checklist for the day, I didn’t know what to do again.
Later, we changed the checklist into a gaol wall. The goal wall was a board that I put my plans on, and also my mid-term targets and long-term goals for each subject, which helped me plan. But after I finished all my plans, I still didn’t know what to do. The other learner, Emily, and I were also talking about “I finished 2 plans! I already finished 4 plans!” and stuff like that, which made us think about learning like when you’re finished with a plan, that learning stops, and the next day that learning starts again.
Then we changed to the “Weapon Wall,” which had many subjects and skills. At that time, there weren’t really plans – I would just choose what tools to use on any day. But it wasn’t so efficient. We did experiment with a lot of new tools, though.
After that, we added “Practicing and Exploration” – Practicing is doing English, Math, Chinese, and things like that. Exploration includes playing iPad and free reading and included Science and Social Studies. At that time, I didn’t really do Science and Social Studies because I spent most of my exploration time playing iPad, doing art things, and doing independent reading.
At that time, I was really aimless, so we started the new learning wall. First, I did a presentation about my long-term goals, and after the presentation, we simplified them and posted them at the top of my new learning wall. We also put up a daily plan chart in the middle, and mid-term targets all around. I also had many weekly targets that were posted on the daily plan. There was a space for questions, ideas, problems, and challenges above that.
I put up so many mid-term targets (32 in total!), and I was always stressed out about my plans and finishing each day around 9 pm so I didn’t have time to do other things like reading books and doing fine art (we call that “being time”). First, I tried to fix it by taking down some mid-term targets, but that didn’t work. Also, the questions, problems, challenges, and ideas were a little disorganized.
We changed the learning wall in another way: there was a box for every subject and at the very top of the box you can put the mid-term target. A little lower, you can put your weekly target. A little lower than that, you can put your tools. There are not so many deadlines, either, so I don’t have to be so stressed out. We also made the questions, problems, challenges, and ideas more separate to make it more organized.
Recently I changed it again by replacing the full week’s plans with a single day that I would fill up every morning – you could erase the day’s label at the top like a whiteboard and write the new day in there. I moved my long-term goals from on top to the middle, and I changed some of them too and put them inside colorful circles so I could see them better.
Now I stopped using the learning wall and use a website called Trello, which organizes my learning better than the learning wall and it’s handier. For example, if I really want to plan and organize my learning while traveling, it’s not like I can take down a whole wall and bring it with me in a suitcase.


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Hi, my name is Felix I'm 14 and I learn autonomously instead of at school. I learned through many projects and I want to share them with you. I did some of these projects by myself but I also did a lot with my friends from different countries!

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