Paradoxes

Published by Lori Pickert on October 7, 2008 at 07:09 PM

 

As an American educator, I cannot help but be struck by certain paradoxes. In America we pride ourselves on being focused on children, and yet we do not pay sufficient attention to what they are actually expressing. We call for cooperative learning among children, and yet we rarely have sustained cooperation at the level of teacher and administrator. We call for artistic works, but we rarely fashion environments that can truly support and inspire them. We call for parental involvement, but are loathe to share ownership, responsibility, and credit with parents. We recognize the need for community, but we so often crystallize immediately into interest groups. We hail the discovery method, but we do not have the confidence to allow children to follow their own noses and hunches. We call for debate, but often spurn it; we call for listening, but we prefer to talk; we are affluent, but we do not safeguard those resources that can allow us to remain so and to foster the affluence of others. — Howard Gardner

4 comments

Comment by Leisa on October 7, 2008 at 10:00 PM

Amen. Again I say- AMEN! And I love the boys at Krannert. I salute you.

Comment by Lori Pickert on October 8, 2008 at 02:44 AM

i salute you right back, partner. :^)

and -- amen! you should know, you public school teacher. :^)

Comment by Jennifer on October 8, 2008 at 11:02 PM

So, so true. Our words are too often unmet with our actions, and we hold our children to a standard that we aren't willing to meet ourselves.

Comment by Lori Pickert on October 9, 2008 at 12:23 AM

so often i would work with a school that wanted their children to work cooperatively, at their own pace, with inspiration instead of coercion. but did they lead their teaching staff to this new program with the same priorities and values? rarely.

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