Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Sudbury & literacy

From: Todd Pratum <>
Date: Mon Nov 29 20:04:00 2004

Yes, but maybe that is another part of the problem? What happened to
the beauty and style and elegance of the hand written letter? And email
is not, in my estimation an improved form of communication, yet it has
nearly replaced the tradition of letter writing. Todd.

JoLynne Martinez wrote:

>Todd, in my experience, generally the rules of grammar and spelling are
>relaxed on the Internet. It is a very informal mode of communication.
>Best wishes,
>-----Original Message-----
>[] On Behalf Of Todd Pratum
>Sent: Monday, November 29, 2004 5:02 PM
>Subject: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Sudbury & literacy
> I for one have been worried--ever since I subscribed to this Sudbury email
>discussion--with the terrible language skills used here, such as the posting
>by Dr. Evan Hughes which was full of so many errors and gross violations of
>English that I wondered, Dr. Hughes, if you have a learning disability?
>This would be good to know considering the nature of the posting. Are there
>other Sudbury people who are troubled by the
>frequent postings to this discussion that are poorly written? Is this a
>taboo subject at Sudbury schools? Or do Sudbury people believe that
>good reading and writing skills are not very important? Or only for those
>naturally gifted? I would like to
>know. I realize that some people's brains are not well suited to
>literacy. I also realize that for some people, to read and write well
>is not considered important, and that is their prerogative of course. I
>suppose if I was a back woodsman who lived a rustic life then I would
>might feel the same way. But I've spent most of my life with books and
>scholarship (as a bookdealer, collector, and constant reader), and it
>seems a pity to me if, with our "radical" educational philosophies, we
>are to deny the universe of written wisdom and experience, the writings
>of Lucretius, and Bede, and Joyce, to all but a small group of people
>who are naturally gifted (i.e. to not encourage people to learn proper
>language skills, even if they don't want to). Of course this has been
>the norm for most of history, with only a small elect being the truly
>literate ones, but there have been occasional periods of moderate
>educational success, (for example Victorian England, though at great
>cost). It seems to me that if our civilization is to survive, we must
>have as many educated souls as possible, people who can read and write
>with sophistication and real understanding. I am fully committed to the
>idea that children have to learn according to their own volition, and at
>their own self-chosen pace, under their own terms, most certainly! But
>at the same time don't we need to impress upon them the value and
>importance of literacy? Congruent to this shouldn't there be at least
>some social pressure to be literate? Just as we need social pressure to
>not steal, to be healthy, to be civil? Or maybe what Sudbury people
>believe is that this is some kind of old fashioned hubris, an arrogant
>classism? I'm confused as to what the Sudbury position is on literacy.
>I've read three or four books written by Sudbury staff and found little
>real discussion of this (yet). Thank you for taking the time to read
>this. Sincerely, Todd Pratum.
> Todd Pratum.
>Discuss-sudbury-model mailing list

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Received on Mon Nov 29 2004 - 20:03:15 EST

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