It is a great find that the book How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School has a free online version! The book has some great research and concepts of learning, such as memory and its structure, analysis and reasoning, self-regulatory capabilities, community participation and so on.
Learning is a basic, adaptive function of humans. More than any other species, people are designed to be flexible learners and active agents in acquiring knowledge and skills. Much of what people learn occurs without formal instruction, but highly systematic and organized information systemsâ€“reading, mathematics, the sciences, literature, and the history of a societyâ€“require formal training, usually in schools. Over time, science, mathematics, and history have posed new problems for learning because of their growing volume and increasing complexity. The value of the knowledge taught in school also began to be examined for its applicability to situations outside school.