Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Encouragment.

From: Todd Pratum <>
Date: Thu Apr 7 21:03:01 2005
Dear Geert,
  Just so you know, the story you mention is fictional, this has never happened (that we know of at least!), however, it is inspired by the many historical accounts of feral children, raised by wolves, apes, even gazelles.  I've read everything I can on the subject.  It is also the basis of the Tarzan story.  These real events are also of considerable importance to linguistic scholars who have been debating intensely for the last 35 years or so the idea of whether man possesses language innately, or whether it must be developed.  So far the evidence seems to weigh against the innate theory, as the feral children, even if rescued at a relatively early age, are unable to develop any but the most basics language skills, even after years of study.  There are also quite a few parents who have kept their children chained inside boxes or dungeons/basements for their entire childhood, never spoken, fed dog food and never allowed to go outside (etc & etc), and these children are also unable to develop any sophisticated language skills. Todd Pratum. wrote:

Thank you, Merci, Dank u, Danke, Grazie, Gracias, ??? ????????????

(Just trying to touch all the bases.)

Prayers and Blessings,


Psalm 46:10  
Be still, and know...          


RE: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Encouragment.
"Geert Wester" <>
Thu, 7 Apr 2005 20:28:20 +0000

Dear Jennifer,
Somewhere I heard the story that one scholar wanted to know what language a child would develop when left completely alone and without anyone speaking to him/her. They found out that the child did not learn to speak any language at all (and as a side-effect turned idiot).
How are we supposed to think anyone will develop anything when nothing is done anywhere? When doing anything seems a sin against a rule of "thou shallt not encourage".
I think doing things and proposing things (actions, developments) to a child is vital for society and is absolutely normal. And at the same time is the opposite of imposing yourself on anyone else. (sorry for the language, this is not my native tongue).
When are we ready to aknowledge that it is only we ourselves who are struggeling with freedom?
(Holland Deventer)
-----Oorspronkelijk bericht-----
Van: []Namens Jennifer Blair
Verzonden: dinsdag 5 april 2005 3:47
Onderwerp: Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Encouragment.

Thank you, this makes complete sense. My understanding had been that staff should not engage in activities unless initiated by a student and similarly should not engage in personal activities, such as bringing a knitting project to school or deciding to start a garden because of the potential influence on kids choices.
----- Original Message -----
From: Alan Klein
Sent: Sunday, April 03, 2005 5:46 PM
Subject: RE: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Encouragment.

For me, the same considerations apply as in the “encouragement” question. I want staff members who are fully active human beings. So, it is entirely possible that I will say to a kid (or anyone else), “I am going to be working in the darkroom at X time. Anyone who wants to join me is welcome to do so.”


A big question to ask oneself is, “Am I offering this activity because I think it will be good for them or because I enjoy doing it?” If the answer is the former, nix the activity!


~Alan Klein


-----Original Message-----
While we are on this topic, I have heard that staff in Sudbury model schools are not suppose to offer activities to kids, rather wait for kids to ask for specific activities and then help if asked for assistance. I would like some clarification on this as well.

Thanks a bunch,

Jennifer Blair

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Received on Thu Apr 07 2005 - 16:58:08 EDT

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