There is no specific definition of education, but generally, this word refers to the process of developing knowledge, skill or character of students. Bearing this in mind, knowledge is the collection of information that has been generated by man, constituting facts, truths, ideas, concepts and laws. The purpose of education is not to make students memorize a lot of information, but rather raise their spirits and develop ability to learn.
There are various sources of knowledge; some of them are formal while others are informal. As a result, these sources give rise to formal and informal education. Knowledge from all these sources helps people to know about themselves, their surroundings, as well as intangible concepts. Formal education is a concept that refers to the process of training knowledge, skills and character through a well-planned and approved program. It is a classroom-based type of learning, offered by trained personnel. Formal education is the most common and effective type of learning. Typically, students proceed from pre-primary to primary education during their formative years of learning. Thereafter, they enrol in high school and later in tertiary educational settings that comprise colleges and universities. Formal education is usually controlled by the government in most countries.
On the other hand, there is yet another type of learning that an individual gains throughout his life, collectively known as informal education. Knowledge from this type of learning does not follow a prearranged structure. Examples of processes that are incorporated in informal learning include knowledge obtained from parents, vocational training, for instance, through apprenticeship. Apprenticeship is mostly applicable in leadership and business fields. Other examples of informal learning include trial and error, where individuals learn from their mistakes.
Families play a very significant role in the growth and learning process of a child. This is because the family setting helps children to learn their values. Children identify themselves with those values that their parents live by. Therefore, children who are morally upright have mostly learnt those morals from their parents. Also, children learn how to treat as well as relate with one another from their families. The level of affection that children express to other people is determined by what they learn and get from their families. In addition, children learn how to obey different levels of authority from their parents. Children’s obedience or disobedience to parents reflects the way they relate to other levels of authority in the society, later in their lives. Those who are obedient to their parents will also obey their teachers, coaches, government officials and even God. Finally, children learn about their faith from their parents. There is a high likelihood that children will follow the same faith as that of their parents.
Children learn how to be street smart so that they can handle strangers and manoeuvre easily during tough scenarios. They learn how to understand their surrounding and get out of trouble safely in case such situations arise. Moreover, there is another type of learning known as trial and error. In this method, the person makes several attempts; he can fail several times until he gets to the right option. This type of learning is mostly based on experimentation. All the attempts that were unsuccessful are retained, while the successful ones are adopted and enhanced.
Apprenticeship is defined as a learning style whereby learners are taught a certain skill through a hands-on experience by skilled personnel, usually through a formal agreement. This method of learning requires the trainee to be fully aware of the career or idea he wants to pursue. It is the most effective method of learning, as the trainee gets acquainted with the best quality training and skills, which are necessary for a specific field of study.