Friday, July 29, 2011

active side

Dewey's fourfold interests of the child fall into two ranges with the four interests being on either the idle or active side. Of course inquiry can be either idle or active. Conversation can actually lead to results, and yet in most school activities inquiry and conversation are controlled to go nowhere, as schools have become negligent of making and artistic expression, thus failing to powerfully engage student interest.

In 1903, the principle of the Rindge Manual Training High School in Cambridge, MA noted that that those entering the school had dramatically increased, and the quality had steadily improved. He said,
"There used to be an idea that manual training was for the stupid boys; this was now completely dead and the most vigorous and enterprising boys chose the Manual Training School with the result that in the English High School the girls outnumbered the boys by three to one."
The really stupid thing is that we fail to realize that all children (boys and girls) prefer to learn through their active side... That their interests in conversation and inquiry are best grounded in making and artistic expression, and yet we turn their conversations and inquiries to naught, make the "idle" when they could lead to so much more.

Today was my final day of Creative Box Making at ESSA. My students returned home carrying boxes and skills they have made and earned. As you can see in the photos above, some fine boxes were made and skills were acquired.

Make, fix and please create...

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