My Learning Disability

By Seymour Papert

This learning story was excerpted from The Connected Family: Bridging the Digital Generation Gap (Longstreet Press, 1996).


All my life, I have had a hard time learning flower names. I would look at a flower and try and try, but the name simply wouldn't come. It was very frustrating.

Then one day I took a different approach: I started with a flower's name, and then tried to think of why the name fit the flower. It became a challenge, a little game I would play with myself. I actually became quite good at it.

I had turned a learning situation into a project to fit my individual interests and learning style.

Now I have no trouble with the names of most flowers. I have come to see flowers as a metaphor for the process of learning itself.

(This story is told in The Connected Family)