Learning is the ability to absorb new information through our senses and process and store the useful bits for using it in future. Correct storage makes for proper memory. Intelligence is the ability to use this stored up information to reply correctly to any present situation. In order for a human being to learn well and act sensibly therefore the processes of obtaining information, sorting it out and storing it must not be interfered with.
Interference can appear at various stages:
a) Interference with the obtaining - too much unnecessary noise and other signals going in at the time of learning.
b) Difficulty comparing and contrasting the new information with already stored up information- not sufficiently clear cues stored with the information for easy checking.
c) Inability to respond appropriately at the moment- the brain is shut down, or one feels like one cannot think well at the moment.
Learning can be interfered with by both external and internal factors. The internal factors can be the following: actual physical damage to the brain at birth or later, chemical imbalances or damage to the nervous system. The external factors could contain the learning environment (structure of the classroom, physical comfort), the material to be learned and the method of presentation and practice.
Emotions or feelings is one of the main internal factors interfering with learning. There are emotions attached to each situation we experience. These emotions get tangled up with the information and prevent the storage process from taking place efficaciously. If these emotions, particularly negative ones, are not cleared out they get triggered repeatedly by similar situations. Each time the emotion is triggered it prevents from the sorting and storing processes again. New information coming in at the present time gets added to the tangle instead of being stored in a proper way. These negative emotions and tangled up data occupy our space that should be free for learning, fresh thinking and being creative. Don’t forget how difficult to pay attention in class when you are worried, upset or anxious.