Constant Hine outlines some common indicators that adult learners are not engaged in a learning experience in CD toolkit, Engaging Adult Learners Using Multiple Intelligences:
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We often find the 'buts' as to why we can not do something, whether it's accomplishing a particular task or resolving a problem. " But I can't because....." I often think of the word IMPOSSIBLE and how it clearly says I'M POSSIBLE, when we turn all those buts into 'so". "So what if I......" This positive attitude is contagious, think of all the people that can learn from this role model.
the way this reads is inconsistent with the learning process. If 'yeah but' thoughts are out of bounds, where is the debate, clarification and discussion? As for side talking, students can learn as much from each other a they can from a teacher.
As a former college teacher, I encouraged students to come up with their own thoughts, to create their own way to become an educator. sitting quietly in rows listening to lectures is not the way to learn...