Friday, August 10, 2012

Comenius on education...

The following is from Charles H. Ham's article "The Co-Education of Mind and Hand."
The fundamental principle of Comenius is that, “we learn by doing.” A victim of the schools of his time, he thus describes them: “They are the terror of boys, and the slaughter-houses of mind—-places where a hatred of literature and books is contracted, where ten or more years are spent in learning what might be acquired in one, where what ought to be poured in gently, is violently forced in, and beaten in, where what ought to be put clearly and perspicuously is presented in a confused and intricate way, as if it were a collection of puzzles—-places where minds are fed on words.”
I start my class at Marc Adams School of Woodworking in the morning. Make, fix and create...


  1. Sorry deleted your message by mistake, but have reposted it here:

    literaryworkshop ( has left a new comment on your post "Comenius on education...":

    Comenius was an interesting figure, very much under-appreciated in the English-speaking world but quite important on the Continent. One of his greatest innovations was universal education--the crazy idea that both boys AND girls of every social class could and should receive the same education. He broke radically with the traditional Scholastic educational methods of his time (the 17th century) and wrote his own textbooks, which were really more like encyclopedias. He did have a rather top-down (deductive) approach, starting with broad principles and working toward specific application.

    You should also look at one of his English detractors, the poet John Milton. His little essay "Of Education" is written partly in response to Comenius. Milton shares Comenius's disdain of Scholasticism but proposes a very different set of methods and materials to replace it.