A designer who writes.


Findings

A library of collectanea.


I never want to be where I cannot see it. All that energy and foolishness, all that curiosity, questions, talk, all those fierce passions, inconsolable sorrows, immoderate joys, seem to many a nuisance to be endured, if not a disease to be cured. To me they are a national asset, a treasure beyond price, more necessary to our health and our very survival than any oil or uranium or–name what you will.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:25pm on October 21, 2017

The child is curious. He wants to make sense out of things, find out how things work, gain competence and control over himself and his environment, do what he can see other people doing. He is open, receptive, and perceptive. He does not shut himself off from the strange, confused, complicated world around him. He observes it closely and sharply, tries to take it all in. He is experimental. He does not merely observe the world around him, but tastes it, touches it, hefts it, bends it, breaks it. To find out how reality works, he works on it. He is bold.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:25pm on October 21, 2017

By now the art or science of giving complicated instructions to incredibly quick but still stupid machines has become the giant field of computer programming.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:25pm on October 21, 2017

All my fantasies did for me–no small thing–was to keep alive a feeling that the world is in many ways a fascinating and beautiful place.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:24pm on October 21, 2017

The two processes are, after all, the same; as we move farther and farther into the world, we take more and more of it into ourselves.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:15pm on October 21, 2017

We are seeing something new in human history, a generation or two of children who have most of their daydreams made for them.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:15pm on October 21, 2017

But children, at least before they meet the ready-made fantasies of TV, don’t want to be omnipotent. They just want not to be impotent. They want to be able to do what the bigger people around them do–read, write, go places, use tools and machines. Above all, they want, like the big people, to control their immediate physical lives, to stand, sit, walk, eat, and sleep where and when they want.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:15pm on October 21, 2017

Their curiosity grows by what it feeds on. Our task is to keep it well supplied with food.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:14pm on October 21, 2017

They see the world as a whole, mysterious perhaps, but a whole none the less. They do not divide it up into airtight little categories, as we adults tend to do.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:14pm on October 21, 2017

It seemed as if their schooling had been for so long so far removed from reality that they were no longer able to see reality, to grasp it, to come to grips with it.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:14pm on October 21, 2017

The children, of course, were not drawing a tree but what they had learned to recognize as a symbol of a tree, almost like a large hieroglyph. The lines they put on the paper did not look to them like a tree; they meant tree.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:13pm on October 21, 2017

Pictures are flat; life has depth. The business of turning real objects into flat pictures is a convention, like language, and like language, it must be learned.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:13pm on October 21, 2017

Now and then he would say indignantly, “Too much peoples!” To which I could only agree.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:13pm on October 21, 2017

He finds it mysterious and exciting that the label that said FRUIT COCKTAIL yesterday still says it today–always says it. And indeed it is mysterious and exciting that, in writing, we should be able to freeze and preserve for as long as we want such perishable goods as thought and speech.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:13pm on October 21, 2017

We can hardly ever hurt children by putting too much information within their reach.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:12pm on October 21, 2017

The anxiety children feel at constantly being tested, their fear of failure, punishment, and disgrace, severely reduces their ability both to perceive and to remember, and drives them away from the material being studied and into strategies for fooling teachers into thinking they know what they really don’t know.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:12pm on October 21, 2017

Confronted with what we do not know, we try to protect ourselves by saying that it is not worth knowing.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:11pm on October 21, 2017

It can’t be said too often: we get better at using words, whether hearing, speaking, reading, or writing, under one condition and only one–when we use those words to say something we want to say, to people we want to say it to, for purposes that are our own.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:11pm on October 21, 2017

Bill Hull once said to me, “Who needs the most practice talking in school? Who gets the most?” Exactly. The children need it, the teacher gets it.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:11pm on October 21, 2017

Most of us are tactful enough with other adults not to point out their errors, but not many of us are ready to extend this courtesy (or any other courtesy, for that matter) to children.

How Children Learn by John Holt 3:10pm on October 21, 2017