Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Prisoners, untie your hands.

As often happens, I spent some time in the night reflecting on our American educational experience. I've been reading an autobiography of the thoughts of Jerome Bruner, educational psychologist, and my interest in Plato's prisoners in a cave allegory comes from his having mentioned it three times in the course of the book.

The allegory presented to Bruner a powerful reflection that seems to have nagged a bit at the edges of his life. He didn't tell much about it in the book as it would be assumed that his academic audience would already be familiar with the story.  After all, it was once common for most academicians to be trained in the classics. It seems that now as we have our eyes glued to the screen, watching images projected for our entertainment, and the control of our perceptions, we have become even more prisoners in the cave than perhaps men were in Plato's time. And then look at school. Prisoners pass through the cave to take their places in the parade of shadows to control others.

If you want to provide for escape, the first thing is to untie the prisoners' hands, that they may release themselves to become further unbound.

Today the 7th and 8th grade students finished their travel journals and the 9th grade students did woodturning. After school I finished my chair for the ESSA ReArt Auction as shown in the photo above.

Make, fix and create.

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