James Nottingham's metaphor of The Learning Pit illustrates the struggle before "getting it."
It's the learning journey of approaching a new concept, uncovering conflicts or contradictions with your knowledge, confusion, beginning to put new ideas together and finally the clarity of a new concept mastered.
There are natural parallels to other models like the stages of competence, Lev Vygotsky's zone of proximal development, or Carol Dweck's growth mindset.
Here's a nice animated video explaining the Learning Pit if you're curious.
The Learning Pit was created by James Nottingham (2007, 2010, 2017). More details at: challenginglearning.com/learning-pit
Nottingham, J.A. (2007). Exploring the Learning Pit. Teaching Thinking and Creativity, 8:2(23), 64–68. Birmingham, UK: Imaginative Minds
Nottingham, J.A. (2010). Challenging Learning (1st ed.). Alnwick, Northumberland, UK: JN Publishing.
Nottingham, J.A. (2017). The Learning Challenge: How to Guide Your Students Through the Learning Pit. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.
Thanks to Julia Silver of Qualified Tutor for educating me about it.
You’re welcome to use and share this image and text for non-commercial purposes with attribution. Go wild!