Every year at about this time, I come to a horrifying realization: school is a completely cruel, artificial setting. Who locks 30 children in a room, forces them to listen and work for hours? What monstrous zookeeper would ever go along with such a plan? I have a sudden urge to join an extreme activist group that would go from school to school releasing the prisoners. Yes, let’s set up a Children’s Liberation Organization! Establish a sanctuary for all our rescued children! Repeat after me, Children are not ours to experiment on!
And so, every year, I recommit to creating a school for “The Ethical Treatment of Children.”
This school must abide by the following guidelines:
*allow for adequate movement and space
*build in time for talk
*strive to reduce stress by creating a climate of curiosity and laughter
*allow for creative expression and encourage diversity
*take itself seriously, but not that seriously (as Mark Twain said, “Never let formal education get in the way of your learning.”)
Whenever I start to get that “caged animal” feeling, I need to go back to these basics.
Can anyone relate?