Elevator Pitch on Aspects of Learning

Human learning has aspects that are cognitive, but it also has social and emotional aspects, and deeper learning requires students connect with the curriculum in all three ways. The emotional and social aspects of human learning appear to be deeply embedded in our nature. It is reasoned our brain evolved to pay attention to what is important and ignore what is unimportant, and emotions are interpreted as an adaption that benefits humans by allowing us to identify what is important. (Of course, I am a Darwinist, so am not claiming emotions evolved so we could identify what is important, but I maintain the structures and functions associated with emotions evolved and the effect of these was beneficial to the creatures who possessed the systems.) Humans are also social creatures, and individuals gain evolutionary advantage by contributing to social groups. For these reasons, our brains have adapted to learn from social situations.