Topic: Experience is the best teacher

1. Essay 1: Experience is the best teacher

Books are considered to be the source of all knowledge, but all that one learns through a book is only of theoretical nature in the form of ideas and concepts. It is essential to utilize them in a real environment and experience the knowledge that is learned from books.

Learning is nothing but understanding the world around us. Books, no doubt are a great source of knowledge as it gives us an idea about a particular subject in detail. But all that one could learn from it is limited to the level of knowing how a certain phenomenon occurs, or how a certain concept works. The knowledge gained through books alone cannot help anyone, because what one learns through the books should be put in to use to harvest the benefits. For instance, a person who wants to learn driving can go through various manuals and guides that teach people how to drive, but all this knowledge is useful only when you are actually driving the car on the roads. It would be an utter waste of time if one just reads the books and does not use them for practical purpose.

Learning through experience is always a lot different from learning through books. Let us consider the same example of a person wanting to learn to drive: even if he goes through every book that is available on driving, still it cannot qualify him as an expert driver. This is because of the fact that books about driving can only teach people traffic rules and provide solutions on how to handle certain situations. The situations faced by a driver could be totally different from what he had learnt from a book. Sometimes we find that the real environment is quite different from the one perceived by us through reading books. This is the very reason why, even in educational institutions, all theoretical classes are followed by practical sessions.

Learning through experience can also be more effective than learning through books because one does not envision everything on his own, but is given a chance to experience the reality. The art of driving can be enjoyed only when we are behind the wheels and not when reading it in books. Moreover, any book is actually an account of past experiences, i.e. it is based on the experiences of people who tried to develop a new idea. The books are their experiences, telling us what they already have tried. Thus from their experiences we can correct ourselves and thus save valuable time and resources. It helps us to concentrate on their failures and to correct them, but they alone cannot teach us everything we need to know. The knowledge learned through books alone cannot help us to face all the exigencies that we would face in real life situations; we have to practice on our own.

Books are like a guiding light in one’s pursuit for knowledge. But it is left to everyone of us to experience it first hand and learn new things for the betterment of their lives. So the notion “experience is the best teacher” is perfectly true.

2. Essay 2 : Are books more important than experience?

It is true that “Not everything that is learned is contained in books.” A person can learn a lot and retain what he learns through experience. In my opinion life’s valuable lessons are learnt from experience and so the knowledge gained from experience is more important.

Books are a great source of information. A person in his lifetime cannot experience everything, but by reading a book on a particular subject he can gain knowledge over that subject in less time. There are books available on any subject that one needs. However experience seems more important to me.

Suppose a person living in the United States wants to learn about India. He has two options: he could visit India and learn about the people and places there or he could just pick up a book about India and read it. The first option will be expensive and time consuming, but at the same time it gives one first hand information and a sense of satisfaction while the second option is less expensive and saves time.

A person can gain knowledge and learn many valuable lessons through his/her own practical experiences and also the experiences of others. The knowledge learnt from experience is very likely to be retained in our memory for a long period of time. The conclusions that we draw from what we learn would be from our practical experience instead of accepting the conclusion drawn in the book by the author.

So in my opinion knowledge can be gained both by reading books and by experience but the knowledge gained through experience is more important.

3. Essay 3 : Are books more important than experience?

Nowadays, most people appreciate learning at school, where a number of books are the source of knowledge. However, from my point of view, learning from experience is much more important than learning from books since our real lives concern more about knowledge from experience than knowledge from books.

Firstly, knowledge obtained from books is more abstract. As we enthusiastically study in classroom, we have learned several mathematic equations, or a number of science theories. Of course, they all are necessary for some professional occupations, such as scientist, engineer, and doctor, but not for all careers.

In addition, knowledge from books is rather logical and exact. The result of a matter is always follow-concerned theories. For example, a person who has learned science can know how long that an apple falls to the ground takes. Certainly, the answer can be obtained by using Newton’s formula.

Nevertheless, I think that the most significant lessons cannot be taught; they have to be experienced. No one can teach us how we can get along with others well when we have to change to a new society. Books cannot teach us how to adjust behavior to satisfy others, and think optimistically when we confront a trouble.

In contrast to books, knowledge from experience is adjustable; it does not depend on any theory or equation. A solution from experience is always depending on the situation and other factors influencing the problem. This is because living experience is so fine and complex that cannot be determined by theories or equations.

In conclusion, although both books and experience can give us a variety of knowledge, in my view, the knowledge from experience is more important. The reason is that in everyday life we must face with a lot of situations, either extremely hard or easy to cope with, that cannot be handle by just knowledge from books.

4. Essay 4:  Not everything that is learned is contained in books

Learning, as the name indicates has lot many meanings as to which source one would choose to understand things of his own interest. Books have always been an inevitable part of one’s life as they have the ability to make people aware of the different things happening in our world. It is said that not everything that is learned is contained in books. This is in fact true because books can offer us knowledge regarding the things that have happened and sometimes the ways to deal with a situation that one can encounter in his life. I would appreciate the fact that the knowledge gained from experience is much more important than that we receive from books. I would like to further illustrate my reasons as follows:

Everyone would admit the fact that knowledge gained from experience is one that remains in our mind forever. It is correctly said, “Experience is the teacher of man.” Being a science student, I have gone through different books where we come across different reactions and experiments, where the results will be shown in the form of diagrams or may be expressed in a simple language. Unless we conduct that experiment we will not know the problems or the difficulties we will have to overcome during the experiments. Textbook knowledge is merely a description of facts and outcomes, whereas the same knowledge when gained through experience teaches us a lot, right from the start till the end and its a journey through the various aspects of one process which one might not be aware of and might not be described in the books.

During my undergraduate years I had only knowledge from books and I used to wonder how the experiments are designed and how they are carried out. But, during my post graduate days I had to do a two month nutritional trial on fishes where I had to cope up with everything like procuring tubs and fishes, arranging aeration facilities, preparation of food for the fishes, daily water exchange, samplings, analysis and so on. Now, I am confident of carrying out similar works and the experience that I have gained will remain with me as long as I live. When similar instances occur, we will have more self-confidence and when such aspects are passed on to our juniors, they would also feel happy and confident.

Needless to say books are also very important. What I have mentioned is from my viewpoint as a science student. There are many different subjects where the conduct of work is tough and in such circumstances we gain information from books. Some aspects would be time consuming and tedious and performing such a work with a limited period of time would not be feasible. In such cases, books definitely open a person’s eye towards various aspects and give him first hand information about what he wants to know.

A person who has learned from experience never forgets what has happened and if it was proved a bad thing then he would certainly try to avoid that situation in the future. If something good has happened then he will put his best to further improve it; that in turn will enhance his skill and boost his self-esteem. Knowledge gained by experience can be passed over to others who also are supposed to face the same situation and that helps the person to be aware of what he intends to do. He can even avoid those factors that can affect his performance.

In fact I would rather say that knowledge gained from experience lingers in our minds forever and that boosts our confidence when taking up a similar task. On the other hand, the fact that books are knowledge providers cannot be ignored, because books provide us with lot more information about the different things that are very difficult to be experienced. Hence it can be concluded that knowledge gained from books is second hand knowledge whereas knowledge that are gained from experience is firsthand and it takes a person through the different hidden intricacies of the task and makes him learn the knowledge in a practical manner.

5. Essay 5 : Are books more important than experience?

To my opinion, books and real experience are two completely different sources of knowledge. It is really difficult to determine which of the two to be of much greater importance, because normally knowledge gained from experience complements that acquired from books, but not substitutes it. Comparing the features of the two sources, I would stress the following points of differences.

First, the knowledge gained from books is, to a certain extent, of abstract nature. Books are normally the collections of facts and general rules. Books give us the most complete overview of a subject in a more or less structured manner, covering all known details and exceptions. In some way, books are concentrations of knowledge and experiences of many generations of people, given in a concise and comprehensive way. Obtaining such knowledge just from the personal experience would take an immense amount of time or even would not be possible at all. The practical experience, gives us not general knowledge, but particular skills. Without these particular skills, all the knowledge gained from books might be just a useless collection of facts and rules. The best example of the importance of practical experience that comes to my mind is learning a foreign language. One can learn a lot of vocabulary and grammar rules, memorize many exceptions, but without actual applying of all this knowledge in real life conversations, writing letters and listening to real speeches, one can hardly be proficient in the language. The importance of having practical skills is also proved by the fact that most employers appreciate working experience above all grades and diplomas.

Another point of contrast between books and experience is that for some subject, such as economy of sociology, a book may represent a point of view of its author or authors. The conclusions given in the book might be out of date, or might be biased by the personal attitude of the authors. In this case, practical experience helps to build up personal perspective on the matter, to bring the matter up to date.

On the psychological grounds, learning from experience is much more efficient than reading books. Reading books is in most cases a passive action, which can be done without much effort. Despite the fact that there are people who can memorize thousands of papers, for a normal person, such work does not result in a deep, comprehensive knowledge base. On the contrary, doing things in practice, people have to overcome various difficulties, get through unknown areas, and pay attention to small details. The reward for these efforts is much more comprehensive and profound knowledge.

Summarizing the said above I want to admit that both books and practice is important in the process of learning. While none of the two can be considered as absolute substitute for the other, I would place the practical experience in a little bit advance position in terms of importance.

6. Essay 6 : Are books more important than experience?

We gain our knowledge about the world and our life from two sources: from experience and from books. These two resources are both important, but which of them is more important?

Knowledge from books forms a very important part of our knowledge structure. In schools and colleges, we learn knowledge that is fundamental to our future career. We learn knowledge from books in order to make our contributions to this society in the future. A student learns mathematic equations and other scientific knowledge and become a scientist or engineer. We will be illiterate and ignorant without learning knowledge from books. Moreover, we acquire knowledge about life and the world by reading books, magazines and newspapers. This is also very important, as we cannot experience everything all by ourselves. Therefore books are a very important source of knowledge.

On the other hand, we cannot learn everything from books. “Experience is the best teacher” is an old cliche but I agree with it. The most important, and sometimes the hardest lessons we learn in life come from our participation in situations. We learn how to get along with others or how to gain self-respect from our experience, not from books. We cannot learn emotional feelings, such as love and care, through books; they come from our real life experience. Knowledge from experience is also a very important supplement to knowledge from books.

Needless to say both learning sources, books and experience, are very important to us. But in my opinion knowledge from experience is more important, because without knowledge from experience, it is impossible to get a real understanding of knowledge from books, and how to apply this knowledge to real world situations.

7. Essay 7 : Are books more important than experience?

Upon the question “not everything that is learned is contained in books”, different people have different opinions. From my point of view, I believe knowledge gained from experience is more valuable than knowledge gained out of books. In the following paragraphs I will try to explain my position more clearly.

Firstly, life’s valuable lessons are learned from experience. Can you forget important lessons learned from your childhood years, such as jumping down from a high place and broke your arms? From that accident you knew the importance of self-protection. Knowledge gained from experience is likely to be retained in our memory for a long period of time, although most of the time we have to pay a price for it.

Secondly, knowledge that is gained by doing things can provide you with firsthand information. If you don’t have the chance to experience on your own, you can only obtain second-hand knowledge and you will feel a lack of self-confidence.

Moreover, many skills and knowledge can only be learned through practical experiences. You cannot learn swimming by just reading from books on how to swim. You have to actually get there and jump into the pool. Experience is the best way to develop your personal abilities.

However, just as an English proverb goes “a coin has two sides,” reading books is also helpful. After all, you will not have the chance to experience everything by yourself. For instance, to travel to foreign countries is expensive and time-consuming, while reading a book about different cultures provides you with plenty of valuable information in a short period of time.

To conclude, knowledge gained from experiences is more important. Life requires knowledge, and experience is the key.

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