My creations

Pay nothing to learn, …but save your internet connection

“Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.”
Carl Sagan

The world today has gone digital. So, Carl Sagan’s “somewhere” is most probably found in the internet.

Self-learning is the only way to learn. Teachers might have done their part, but in the end it’s what we practice and understand that makes us learn. Sure, we need guidelines!

Apart from academia, we want to learn arts and skills like how to play a guitar, sketch, or do skill moves like  our football icons do. Paying for all that we want to learn is impractical and, let’s face it, impossible. Thanks to the web, we can learn all this and pay nothing bar what we pay for our internet connection.

Internet is a huge collection of resources. We can use them in our favor to learn. I have found, and tried many of them myself to learn things like playing my favorite song with a Guitar, some key phrases of Spanish language etc. and succeeded. I will discuss some of them that I know from my personal experience and a bit of internet research.

YouTube is an ocean of videos. Try searching in YouTube whatever you want to learn by beginning with “how to” and get amazed with results. Many people and popular organizations have made official channels for you to learn. It’s for you! Probably why they call it YouTube.

Learning a foreign language is also very easy with the web. Popular sites like Busuu and Livemocha have designed step-by-step guides to learn almost all of the popular spoken languages in the world.

Some sites even go to the extent of teaching online classes, creating a virtual classroom, and making discussions like you do in school. OnlineClasses, Education-Portal etc. offer such services.

Sites like HowStuffWorks and Ehow are quite popular and what they do is reflected in their respective names.

Trusted organizations like MIT and BBC have their own free resources center. Being a satisfied user of both of them, I highly recommend them. Both cover a wide range of fields to learn.

Please try Creativity-Portal and Plinky whenever you are free. They are interesting. I’ll let you explore for yourself and be surprised.

Online forums for almost everything are very important discussion tools. You discuss your related problems to other users like you and experts of the field. Search for such forums in any area of your interest and it is highly likely that you find a useful one.

Sites I mentioned above are mere pebbles in a rocky beach. There are more where they come from, and most might even be better than those mentioned here. Please make a comment if you know any other similar sites. Comments for any other reasons are also welcome.

One word of advice: Do not try to learn many things at once. It is bound to be a failure. Concentrate on learning one thing, and commit to it. Take it from someone who has tried to learn many things at a single period of time and failed.

Leaving you with what one of my source of inspirations has to say about learning – “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”
Henry Ford

By, Kshitiz Khanal (23 Aug, 2012)

Originally written for View Your Choice blog.

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