John Holt


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how children learn... a very useful book for parents and teachers

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John Holt

  1. 1. John Holt A man with deep insight, an extra ordinary reflective teacher, close observer and an author of 10 influential books translated into 14 languages. How children learn More than 1 million copies sold and influenced generations of teachers and parents to make the schools and homes both better place for children to learn and enjoy their childhood. Through this great piece of thought he tried to make us realized that • Childs learning is not just storing some information in the hard disk of a computer. • It is not like a behavioral modification occurs in dogs ,pigeons ,cats and rats as a result of classical of operant conditioning. • It is far beyond that and cannot be measured through artificial intelligence testing like Wechsler Intelligence scale for children and Bender Gestalt test.
  2. 2. • How human, the supreme creature learn to talk, read and reason. • How we adults can support, enhance and facilitate their innate learning abilities. • How schools are playing a negative role in damaging the real learning processes. Revised edition, book of 9 chapters, 303 pages is a unique collection of the author’s reflections and close observations based on one to one interaction with children on daily basis as a teacher, a family member and as a family friend. Getting letters from many parents about their children in a magazine “growing without schooling” is also supporting this fact that, Children are innate and gifted learner and learn without being taught. They learn better when they learn in their own way for their own reasons. In talking, reading, writing and many other things they do, children are perfectly able if not being hurried, corrected and tested.
  3. 3. They have the ability to correct themselves after noticing their own mistakes, but this ability affected under pressure and anxiety induced by adults. school’s challenges which should serves as a power stretcher becomes threats because of criticism , comparisons and even punishments which gives them the message that “it is beyond their power and they start under estimating themselves”. All they need is Trust and Respect after Love. give them the sense of their own worth. Talking more about correction which seems to be the mildest form of punishment for me , kills the skills of self correction and self checking . feeling of shame , occurs as a result of correction paralyzed the thinking , so how can the child compares and correct himself. He said ,
  4. 4. “we do not need to learn more about the brain , as an organ in order to make schools better .pleasurable experiences are easiest to remember and memory works best when unforced.” I think if we want to undo the negitive things experienced by the previous generation , We must read this book. To make the child hood of the next generations more pleasurable, healthy and fruitful.