Tuesday, December 17, 2013

the occupation of making gifts...

While I'm on the subject of Froebel's gifts and occupations, we've come to the point in which the idea of a gift is that it is something to be bought in a store, and not a thing that we make for each other expressing love and personal intelligence.

In reading about Kindergarten I ran across this quote from Édouard Séguin in a book on Kindergarten
"As soon as we, young or old, have taken to the habit of asking the book for what it is in our power to learn from personal observation, we dismiss our organs of perception and comprehension from their righteous charge, and cover the emptiness of our own minds with the patchwork of others." --Édouard Séguin
Séguin's methods of work with the developmentally disabled had been an inspiration to Maria Montessori and helped guide  the development of the Montessori Method of education. There is certainly nothing new to be found here in this blog. I am simply attempting to remind parents, teachers and woodworkers of what we've always known if we've taken time to observe and have learned to trust our own observations. Comenius had said:
"Instruction must begin with actual inspection, not with verbal descriptions of things. From such inspection it is that certain knowledge comes. What is actually seen remains faster in the memory than description or enumeration a hundred times as often repeated."
Pestalozzi had said:
"Observation is the absolute basis of all know ledge. The first object, then, in education, must be to lead the child to observe with accuracy; the second, to express with correctness the re sults of his observation."

But we choose instead to cripple our children by giving them stuff that stifles their own imaginations and creative capacities.

Today the students at Clear Spring School will finish our toy making project in which we make toys cars and trucks to be given to children who visit our local food bank.

Make, fix and create.

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