Wednesday, February 03, 2016
each child is...
My daughter is teaching in a New York high school where they state without reservation that each child is an intellectual. David Henry Feldman wrote an award winning essay, The child as craftsman, in which he noted that all children have within their essential nature, the inclination to do something in which they excel. In yesterday's post we referred to the lone scientist, noting that each child engages in a systematic examination of the world in which they live. And so we begin to note that each child is a reflection of the whole of humanity. Given the opportunity, children are makers, and music makers, and investigators, and productive decision makers who care for the needs of their communities and others without boundary.
In Germany before the rise of the Third Reich, the literacy rate was right at 100%. It seems that the ability to read can be essential to the modern authoritarian state, as the distribution of propaganda has become one of the means through which to control a mindless populace bent upon mindless consumption and wanton waste of resources whether they lay within one's own boundaries or not. If you have been careful in education to disregard the natural processes of intellectual development and have thereby developed a populace unwilling or unable to question authority, you've got it made.
In the wood shop, I steer my students away from mindless activities. They must observe carefully as they create. There is some science to it. What they do shows up directly in their work, so that they themselves assess its value. We practice thrift. They also learn to collaborate with and encourage each other. And its fun.
Today in the Clear Spring School wood shop, my students will be working on their guitars and other tools related to their travels. The box shown above is my tribute to the brothers Greene.
I would like to invite you to become a supporter of the Clear Spring School. At the upper right hand corner of the opening page you will find a link where it says, "Give Now." Why would you do so? We are breaking new ground and setting a fresh example that's sorely needed in American education.
Make, fix, create, and extend the vision of others learning likewise.