Don’t let schooling interfere with your education. ~ Mark Twain
I have been fortunate enough, over the past several days, to spend time in California with my family. In doing so, I have had the opportunity to carefully observe my daughter in her full, seven year-old glory. She (like most kids her age) is inquisitive, imaginative, innovative and possesses unique talents/interests–all potential strengths that I hope will be cultivated and encouraged throughout her educational career. Many educators have echoed concerns, expressed by Sir Ken Robinson (Do Schools Kill Creativity?), that schools–at least in the traditional (and generalized) sense of the term–gradually diminish these characteristics that seem inherent in children.
As a public educator, I have become intensely aware of the importance of identifying the unique talents of individual students, giving them the tools to pursue their interests and then getting out-of-the-way. As I discussed in The Case for Creativity, I believe that good schools assist students in identifying their unique talents and then provide opportunities for them to explore, practice and enhance their abilities. Don’t get me wrong, I am not advocating for a classroom free-for-all, but as Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) suggested, we shouldn’t allow school to interfere with the education of our kids.
Just food for thought….