Tag Archives: school

Now You Know What A Horse Is: Views On Education in the 19th Century

Schools are scenes of extreme manipulation and coercion. Our national and state interest in them is less than benign, or as the soft-hearted among us might say, less than caring. Let us, residents of our towns where our children go to school, take them over and force the issue. The State has no interest in […]

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Neither Men Nor Toadstools

AUDIO: Neither Men Nor Toadstools I’m inclined to think “teaching” and “instruction” in institutional contexts are only misguided industrial practice. The best that can be done (and one might admit it’s not nothing though suspect) is to learn a way to speak about the mechanics of language conventions. The only way to “master” these conventions is […]

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What is Learning?

Question: Define the purpose of guttering on a house. Answer: Choose the response that represents your thinking. a. to catch rain water coming off the roof b. to catch and direct rain water deflected by a roof out away from a vulnerable foundation c. to correct an imposition d. to protect a preconception We have […]

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Schools (Don’t?) Matter, (Nor) Does Creativity?

Schools (Don’t?) Matter, (Nor) Does Creativity?

Okay, I’ll confess to being less than tactful most of the time.  But I gotta tell you, I’m pretty tired of one particular complaint that I hear (rather, read) again and again on education sites and FB pages dedicated to combat testing regimes in public education: “Your stealing my child’s creativity!” Be sure, I too […]

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Discipline and Punish

Discipline and Punish

Maybe you’re not 44 and so are not conversant with the movie Reality Bites (its genesis and presentation 20 years past), but I am. The down-and-out 20-something “losers” (heed my punctuation, please) in that film did not exemplify me.  I had a job as an English teacher in a parochial high school in St. Louis, […]

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How We Learn: How We Don’t Learn

It’s possible that if I even hint at the name “Melville” to begin a piece anyone who sojourns here will click the “close” button and be well on their merry way.  (Though surely there are intrepid adventurers among us willing always to hear more of the greatest American writer–yes, I said that.) But, all I’m […]

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Public Potluck Picnic Perfection

There is real humanity in the potluck picnic.  Or rather, a humanity that is real: personal, physical, unmediated. Yesterday, after our annual, end-of-the-year elementary public school music program, the families of students in the the mixed-age (K-6) classroom (which our children have attended for the past three years) gathered for the annual picnic. The school […]

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The Logic of Technagogy

Our advances in technology offer what we might call short-cuts to thinking and doing. The logic of technagogy might be stated thus: the more technology we use in elementary and secondary schools the less the students need to think and do.  In other words, introducing children at younger ages and in a sustained fashion to […]

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Learning Bathroom Discipline: Let Freedom Aggregate

One of the abiding memories of school for many of us is the fact that you have to ask permission to use the bathroom and that that request can be denied you.*  We are taught in school, and perhaps this is the sole abiding goal of the institution, how to be bossed; to learn the […]

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While You Still Have a Body: Rethinking Everything

The world dominated by humans operates outside of our frame of reference.  No matter how hard you try it’s hard to think about the muddle when you are surrounded by it.  It thinks you. Forgive me if what follows is confused.  Too much disgusts me lately and it is all related and my responses are […]

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Building the Insanity In: Ex Machina

This is not a movie review. This is me thinking about empathy. Last night, lonely little ol’ me sat in […]

Dislodged Giant: Can We Use Stevens to Interpret Dickinson?

You tell me. “I thought that nature was enough” by Emily Dickinson I thought that nature was enough Till Human […]

By Metaphor Alone

Motivation matters. If the scientific method (which we make into the massive all-encompassing abstraction of SCIENCE to compete with the […]

By Force of Law

Nothing new under the sun. Why do you suppose a “Sanders” presidency would change what is described below in Chapter […]

Now You Know What A Horse Is: Views On Education in the 19th Century

Schools are scenes of extreme manipulation and coercion. Our national and state interest in them is less than benign, or […]

A Rule of Storytelling and Unhappiness

As my friend began reading William Morris’s News From Nowhere, or, An Epic of Rest, I thought I might take […]