DSM: Re: Re: The library

From: Mark Ide (mide@rcn.com)
Date: Thu Dec 27 2001 - 16:51:56 EST


Dear Warren:

What an excellent piece. I'm saving it, and tempted to send it to freinds
who are teachers in the Newton School system. But, I don't want to butt in.
They are good, and kind hearted people, doing some pretty good things. They
have their challenges, and so do I. For them though, they complain that life
is busy, busy, busy, very hard and stressful. I, however, and am mostly
relaxed, grateful and having a wonderful time.

I am grateful for your contribution. Please do not hestiate to continue.

Peace, love,

Mark
----- Original Message -----
From: Warren McMillan <warren@bmts.com>
To: <discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org>
Sent: Wednesday, December 26, 2001 5:10 PM
Subject: DSM: Re: The library

> Jerry writes:
> >Why don't traditional educators get it?
>
> Good question! Having been a traditional educator, and having taught
> children who have since become traditional educators, much to my chagrin,
I
> have some thoughts.
> First of all, every school has its own culture including a history and
> unique traditions. Teachers and students alike become a part of that
> culture. For many teachers, the school becomes the centre of their
> lifestyles. For others, their sense of worth or their sense of purpose is
> invested in the school. Are people with such investments open to radical
> change? Would you be?
> As well, most teachers, in my experience, were themselves 'good' students.
> Their learning styles matched the predominent teaching methods so they
> excelled easily, for the most part. Students in traditional schools have
> two choices: to defy or to defer. Most teachers chose the latter. They
> were themselves the model students who received the praise and awards and
> certificates and all the other trappings that coercive schooling bestows
on
> its own. This does not make them bad people but it does make them
resistant
> to alternatives.
> Also, most traditional teachers are truly dedicated to helping children.
> They truly believe in what they are doing and they receive enough positive
> feedback from children and parents to maintain their sense that they are
> doing something worthwhile. They believe. Changing the minds of people
who
> 'believe' is not easy. It requires the persuasive power necessary for
> nothing less than a religious conversion.
> My question is: What difference does it make if traditional teachers get
it
> or not? They couldn't change traditional schooling even if you convinced
> every one of them. Real educational change will not come from the
teachers.
> In all the years I taught in traditional schools, the only thing that ever
> made any difference at all, and I don't mean anything significant, was
> economics. Money, or lack thereof, makes change... no pun intended.
> Finally, some _do_ get it but it makes no difference. These are teachers
> with mortgages just like you and a good steady income to support their
> families. They get it but there are few, if any, alternative schooling
> positions available and fewer still that will pay a decent wage. They get
> it but it won't pay the rent.
> So, save your energy. Find rebellious young people, or rebellious old
> people for that matter, to work in your schools. Traditional education
will
> eventually buckle under its own weight as an economically unviable
> institution.
>
> Warren
>
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: <JerryAERO@aol.com>
> To: <discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org>
> Sent: Saturday, December 22, 2001 1:41 PM
> Subject: DSM: The library
>
>
> >
> > In a message dated 12/22/01 10:20:38 AM, Sugmapl@aol.com writes:
> >
> > << But there is a second paradigm. Your statement : "We don't evaluate
> their
> > progress" is a near perfect statement of this second paradigm. >>
> >
> > Is this really such an odd concept? They don't test or evaluate us when
we
> go
> > to the library, do they? The assumption is that the patrons know what
they
> > are doing and what they want to learn. I think this is closer to the
> paradigm
> > of what education must be, going forward. Here's a better question: Why
> don't
> > traditional educators get it?
> >
> > Jerry
> >
> >
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