Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Fabulous Education Book

I just "devoured" an education book! Frank Smith's The Book of Learning and Forgetting is a wonderful dissection of current education theories and a call for returning to the more classic ideas/philosophy of education. His basic premise is that children (and adults too for that matter) learn best based on the company they keep and what they're doing -- he terms this "classic theory of education". The "official theory" however, as seen in most American schools for the past 100 years or so, is standardization, segregation (into age and ability groupings), and separation of students from each other and their teachers. The false grouping of children of like age -- that is, first graders are all 6 -- is not reality and forces the teacher to teach a roomful of children with no assistance. Smith describes the benefit of the old one-room schoolhouse where all ages are together and the older are helping the younger and all are learning at their own speed ....

I've set this book aside and will re-read it over the next week or so ... then I'll post pithy quotes direct from Dr. Smith's writings.

2 comments:

Jen said...

I just ran across this book at the library and put it back on the shelf. After reading your quick review, I'll have to head back to the library.

Suzanne said...

Ugh. Neither of our library systems has it. I just put it on ILL, and I look forward to your commentaires!

And, I loved the travel ideas for your 4-8 year old in the later post. Who would've thought there was a book about TAPE?