Thursday, September 22, 2016

little say.

Under most teaching situations, children have little say as to what they do, or how their learning will work out. In classes they have little or no choice as to what books are to be read. They sit when told to sit, stand when told to stand.

But when we give some say to children as to what to do, what to learn, what to read and what to make, the level of enthusiasm grows enormously. There is a wrongful assumption that children are different from adults and must be taught. Whereas, learning is actually an innate human function, that can be successfully forced into repression through classroom learning.

Yesterday my 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade students decided they wanted to finish their toy people, and finish them they did. With gusto. Marco decided to add "jet packs" and when those were finished, adding wheels became the obvious necessity. Marco's rocket man will be played with, broken, fixed and broken again, but no toy from Walmart could elicit as much genuine excitement.

With my book about making Froebel's gifts complete, I am getting back to box guitars. I am selecting, organizing and naming photos, writing captions and text. Drawings must be done also. I hope to bring that book to a stage at which it can be laid out and edited within the next two months.

Next week, an editor from Fine Woodworking will come to take photos for an article on hinges for boxes.

Make, fix, create, and let your own life suggest the likelihood that others learn likewise.

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