Observation skills can be defined as visual keenness or the ability to comprehend something through sight. Observation skills is one of the cognitive skills that are tested in children as a development criterion.
Therefore, it is safe to say that observation skills are an important and integral part of human behaviour. Let’s look at the importance of observation skills and how one can develop these skills.
Importance of Observation Skills
1. Develops Curiosity
The importance of observation skills in life is that it develops curiosity. People who observe are curious about the events happening around them. These are the people who usually ask a lot of questions.
They have observed and need answers and explanations regarding what they have seen. When there is a sense of curiosity, your mind automatically hunts for answers.
2. Observation Skills Help to Improve Processes
Observation skills help improve processes and make necessary amends. Take, for example, a teacher in the class observing how students interact with each other. This can help the teacher identify certain characteristics of a student and help the student achieve greater heights.
3. Keen Observation Skills Can Help Prevent Accidents
When you are a keen observer, you will have your eye on many things. You will be aware of events around you and you can even avert an accident because of your vigilance.
A good driver must have keen observation skills and have an eye on the road and all vehicles at all times. Good observation skills can avoid accidents.
4. Deeper Understanding
Observation skills give you more information about a particular subject. For example, you are learning about force in your physics class.
You can learn through texts and books, but when you see the event in front of you, you can understand it much better.
You kick a football; your friend exerts an opposite force that stops the ball from moving in the direction you kicked it. Here, you are able to understand the concept of force much better because you have observed it in front of you.
5. Real-Time Feedback
The importance of observation skills is that it gives you real-time feedback. You can observe certain things to get answers.
Here you do not need to wait for the results of surveys to get answers. Observation skills can give you immediate relays and instant feedback.
6. Quick Instrument for Learning
Another importance of observation skills in life is that it acts as an instrument for quick learning. As you observe, you tend to grasp more and learn faster.
Observing your classmates allows you to learn good things from them. From a teacher’s point of view, observing other colleagues or teachers can help you adopt better teaching methods and techniques.
7. Develops Personality
Great observation skills develop a personality. Many people are influenced by the events around them. Observing these occurrences can have a deep impact on the personality of a person.
That is why it is important to surround yourself with positivity around and learn from positive occurrences happening around you.
8. Improves Communication Skills
Observation skills directly improve communication skills. When you observe your colleagues or peers, you come across more information.
This extra information makes you more knowledgeable with information and thus allows you to converse better.
9. Helps You Adapt to Change Better
You may wonder how observation skills help to adapt to change better. Let’s explain this through an example. You have just relocated to a new country for education purposes.
Your observations about the people, their lifestyles, and mannerisms will help you adapt to the country quicker than if you had not been observant.
Through the power of observation, you know what is the accepted norm in the country and what is not accepted to do in the country.
It is important to know these small things so that you adjust to the new country faster. Remember, what is accepted in your own country back home may not particularly be accepted in the new country.
How to Develop Observation Skills?
Observation skills are not something that can be developed overnight. It requires years of practice to become a keen observer.
Not only must you be a keen observer but also be able to learn from your observations. Let’s look at some of the ways you can adopt activities to develop observation skills.
1. Engage in Interactions
Interacting with others can help you develop keen observation skills. Your interactions with others can broaden your perspective. You can learn from people’s experiences and develop your own based on what you have observed around you.
Reading story books is an important activity to develop observation skills. Through books, you tend to imagine scenes and develop an imagination of your own. This helps to nurture observation skills in real life.
3. Improve Observation Skills Games
Indulging in some observation skill games can go a long way in helping you develop observation skills. Engage in some productive games like memory, pictureka, Cluedo, and other mind games that require observation skills to master.
It is best to play games that involve keen observation. You can add games that involve colour or searching for things. “I spy” is a keen observation game that kindles great observation skills.
4. Ask Questions
Another way of how to develop observation skills is to ask questions based on what you have seen or heard or observed.
When you ask questions, your curiosity gets answers and you wish to learn more each time. If you do not get your questions answered, they remain at a loose end, thus killing your curiosity.
5. Project-Based Learning
Project-based learning is another great way of how to develop observation skills. When you engage in activities it makes you more attentive.
You tend to observe all the points in detail and then include them in your project. This means you have observed and then noted your observations.
6. Experimental Method of Learning
Practical workshops are an important activity to develop observation skills. Take for example your chemistry laboratory experiment.
Notice how you observe certain reactions to chemicals and write down your observations in your lab report book. Experimental or practical learning gives you first-hand information from observed matter.
Observation Skills in Education Sector
When it comes to education, observation skills play a very important role. It is through these observation skills that amends can be made to the education system.
Let’s take, for example, research and surveys conducted by the education board to gauge the performance of students.
Here the education department makes certain observations regarding students and their performance in exams and based on these observations, amends are made to the system.
Observations in Health Sector
The importance of observation skills can be seen even in the health sector. Many times, doctors put patients under observation to see how well a medication is working.
Based on these observations, the doctor will then decide the next course of action for the patient. Therefore the importance of observation skills in the health sector cannot be undermined.
Observation skills are an important skill set to master. Though it may take years to master, picking up the skill early on in life will do wonders to your career and life goals. Observation skills make a person alert and ready at any time.