"I have learned very well, little children strongly dislike being given more help than they ask for." John Holt
This should be obvious to every parent. Kids are so serous about their work. I can personally feel my daughters being insulted whenever I cross this line between giving them help with something they asked me to help them with and volunteering my help without being asked. It is such a vote of no confidence to them. My wife and I argue about his all the time though. Our arguments parallel those I have often with teachers about regarding teaching and learning, curriculum and instruction, objectives, etc.
"Many children like playing a game with a grownup in which each takes turns adding something to the song. It is not... http://tl.gd/8h7upg
I read this description of the song making game and I immediately thought of my "imagination adventures" I have with my own children.
"It is hard not to feel that there must be something very wrong with much of what we do in school, if we feel the n... http://tl.gd/8h86uc
I think this quote is so important. Calls into question so much of what we assume about student motivation and how most educators harbor a false belief that they can manipulate that motivation.
"It is hard not to feel that there must be something very wrong with much of what we do in school, if we feel the need to worry so much about what many people call 'motivation.' A child has no stronger desire that to make sense of the world, to move freely in it, to do the things that he sees bigger people doing. Why can't we make more use of this great drive for understanding and competence?" John Holt
@anderscj The quotes you post remind me that "children are scientists first" with the way they encounter the world.
"It is probably a mistake, anyway, to assume that whatever little children touch they will destroy, and that we mus... http://tl.gd/8h89r9
"It looks very much as if children catch most of their fears from their elders." John Holt
I will say this is true- RT @anderscj: "It looks very much as if children catch most of their fears from their elders." John Holt
"Best of all, as Seymour Papert points out in Mindstorms, are the word processors on which people can actually edit... http://tl.gd/8im29p
Holt's description of letting children play with his typewriter brought back memories of my dad's old typewriter that I had nearly forgot about. We had this old typewriter, the heavy kind with the keys that would swing the (I don't know what they were called) letters on these metal sticks to hit the paper. I have memories of doing the things with this typewriter that Holt describes children doing, including intentionally trying to jam the keys together just to figure out how to pry them back apart. I wonder if that early experience has anything to do with my current relationship with technology.
"It is a very rare child who is capable of the kind of sustained, deliberate cruelty so often shown by adults." John Holt
"All children want and strive for increased mastery and control of the world around them, and all are to some degre... http://tl.gd/8imcqb
"The word no, for a two-year-old, is the Declaration of Independence and Magna Carta rolled into one." John Holt
I love this one! “@anderscj: "The word no, for 2yrold, is Declaration of Independence & Magna Carta rolled into one." John Holt”
I love this quote
"Why are older children so much less able to stand the frustration of—let us call it, not failure, but—deferred suc... http://tl.gd/8imv3t
Very important observation. Lets repeat it:
"Why are older children so much less able to stand the frustration of—let us call it, not failure, but—deferred success? I suspect it is because they are already, even in nursery school, in a very competitive, status-conscious situation, all struggling for the approval of the teacher, or each other." John Holt
"When we feel powerful and competent, we leap at difficult tasks. The difficulty does not discourage us; we think, ... http://tl.gd/8jdesn
"There are times when even the most skillful learner must admit to himself that for the time being he is trying to ... http://tl.gd/8jdkgb
"There are times when even the most skillful learner must admit to himself that for the time being he is trying to butt his head through a stone wall, and that there is no sense in it. At such times teachers are inclined to use students as a kind of human battering ram. I've done it too often myself. It doesn't work." John HoltWhenever I teach computer programming classes I find myself up against this truth on a daily basis. Often a student will come to me for help asking me to give him the information they need to complete the task. However, often with programming to complete the task is to master it and to master it is to understand it and I know that to understand it means often that the student has to figure it out for themselves. Usually I am met with some frustration when I recommend that the student sleep on the problem and come back to it. Usually this does the trick and I know that if I had rammed that kid through that wall of understanding they would never have mastered it. Besides, so much of learning is learning how to handle this kind of frustration for yourself. I often describe this to students and their parents when they are frustrated both with the problem at hand and my response. I have never had a student come back after sleeping on it and not be able to master the material. I wonder how many other domains of learning this is also true for.
"Children resist, almost always angrily, all such unasked-for teaching because they hear in it the (perhaps unconsc... http://tl.gd/8jech3
Lets repeat this one too:
"Children resist, almost always angrily, all such unasked-for teaching because they hear in it the (perhaps unconscious) message, 'You're not smart enough to see that this is important to learn, and even if you were, you're not smart enough to learn it.' Naturally it makes them hurt and angry. 'Let me do it myself!' they shout. That's just what we should do." John Holt