Through the Prism

After passing through the prism, each refraction contains some pure essence of the light, but only an incomplete part. We will always experience some aspect of reality, of the Truth, but only from our perspectives as they are colored by who and where we are. Others will know a different color and none will see the whole, complete light. These are my musings from my particular refraction.

12.30.2006

Library Database Required

A while back I wrote about liking the idea of "unschooling" as a model of homeschooling. I realize that it's a pretty extreme idea, though, and can't really say how well it works since I haven't seen it in action. An intriguing look at the far other side of the issue was written about by David Brooks on December 3 in the New York Times in an article titled Teaching the Elephant:

. . . A generation ago, the gods of education fashion ordained that children should be liberated from desks-in-a-row pedagogy to follow their "natural" inclinations. In those days, human beings were commonly divided between their natural selves, assumed to be free and wonderful, and their socially constructed selves, assumed to be inhibited and repressed.

But now, thanks to bitter experience and scientific research, we know that the best environments don't liberate students. We know, or have rediscovered, that the most nurturing environments are highly structured. Children flourish in homes that are organized, in families where attachments are stable, among people who plan for the future and within cultures that celebrate work.

Many of today's most effective antipoverty institutions are incredibly intrusive, even authoritarian. Up to a point, elephants seem to like it that way.

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