Becoming A Self-Directed Learner – Part 6: Social Environment.

by Patrick Liew on January 26, 2014

Self-directed learners have to learn to decide whether they wish to work alone or with others for various tasks and under different situations.

Inevitably, they will be influenced by people and interactions with them. These people include teachers, peers, non-teaching staffs in school, tutors, parents, siblings, friends, neighbours and relatives.

There are five key points to remember about managing the social environment.

First, your children must realize that they need to work with people in their life.

They have to learn to enjoy it and know how to develop the skills to make full use of it.

Without the right attitude and commitment, they will not know how to manage their social environment.  They will not know what to do, who to do it with, when to do it, and other important details about building positive relationships.

Secondly, they need to develop a healthy self-image and self-efficacy. It will enhance their confidence in
approaching others for help, advice, and resources.

Asking for help does not mean that they are strange, incompetent, unacceptable or immature.

They must know how to overcome negative thoughts, emotions, and concerns about working with people.

They must overcome any fear, embarrassment and anxiety. They need to overcome past failure and rejection in working with people and draw lessons from these experiences to improve themselves

Thirdly, they need to set goals on developing knowledge and skills to build a healthy interpersonal relationship. They must know how to cooperate and collaborate with others and co-create solution with them.

In an increasingly globalised world, they need to  develop cultural intelligence. They need to be sensitive to people from different culture, community and country and who subscribe to different creed and custom and know how to work with them.

Fourthly, they need to develop interpersonal relationship skills to help them operate under different social situations.

It includes asking and responding to questions in class.

They have to learn how to learn from others and model after their character and behaviour.

To develop these skills, your children need to learn how to reflect and tackle negative self-talk.

They need to interrupt cycles of negative programming, thought patterns, and responses and replace them with a new framework for engaging others.

Last but not least, they need to learn how to move out or seek help to move out of a negative social environment. They must know how to continue to improve their social skills to survive and succeed in any learning environment.

In conclusion, it is important to develop the right attitude, self image and behaviour to manage the social environment.

With the right goal and an effective learning process and a commitment to improve interpersonal relationship skills, your children will become a better self-directed learner.


I hope this message will find a place in your heart.

By the way, I have also recorded other reflections.

Visit my Inspiration blog at

For my opinions on social affairs, please visit my Transformation blog at

Please visit my website,

Please read my reflections and continue to teach me.

Life is FUNtastic!


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