Wednesday, March 30, 2016


Getting back to school yesterday, I sat down with a sloyd knife and whittled a simple propeller which I was in the process of testing when the second grade students came in. Of course they wanted to make propellers of their own, and these led to testing, and my students running from one end of the playground to the other. In the hands of one students, one propeller on each end of a stick became an airplane and a control panel was added. Schooling should be full of such memorable experiences as that.  May such learning become woven into
the fabric of life!

I have been making progress in learning Norwegian, with the accompanying realization that speaking it and conversing in it takes far more than just a computer program to enable me to do so. The way the brain works is complex, and learning involves more than just input through one sensory organ alone. It also takes practice, and practice again, and that practice is best when the full range of senses and motor capacities are required, just as they are in full life.

Teaching adults gives me the opportunity to observe as students wrestle with a variety of issues. Some come to class with varying degrees of physical ability or impairment. The handling of materials can be a challenge for some. Positioning of parts can be awkward without practice, even though you've seen it many times before in the hands performed by others. Part of the problem adults face these days, can be directly traced to schooling in which the hands were left still, for without practice at an early age, the hands may be left awkward, requiring a great will to overcome what would have been made easier by practice at an early age.

Make, fix, create, and extend to others the love of learning likewise.

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