Several of the class members also cited curiosity as an attitude important for learning. And they demonstrate this attitude themselves, enjoying delving into new areas of study and experience and learning from these pursuits.

Not everyone exhibits this type of inquisitiveness. Anthropologist Mary Catherine Bateson, in her book Peripheral Visions: Learning Along the Way (HarperCollins, 1994), writes about experiments conducted by ophthalmologist Adelbert Ames at Princeton University in the mid-twentieth century. Ames set up a series of rooms and boxes that created various optical illusions. In one experiment, subjects looked through a peephole and tried to touch various points with a stick. Because of the deliberate distortions of ...

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