Re: DSM: Lessons

Allan Saugstad (
Thu, 05 Apr 2001 11:27:09 -0700

I really would enjoy to read comments on this subject too.

In my opinion, I agree with offering learning opportunities as long as they
are truly not coercive in their intent. Examples may include posting new
activities or workshops on a bulletin board or simply starting something
yourself. I have a friend who wants to build a telescope. He is just going
to start doing it. I am sure many of the kids will come over and ask
questions and eventually start helping out. If they want to join, they will
be welcome; if not, well fine!

In order to learn, students need exposure to a rich environment. I think
this should include a variety of resources available for them to use and
learning opportunites from others.

Of course, kids can learn a lot on their own with very little resources -
(for example, having access to a forest rather than $2000 worth of toys) but
in general the richer the environment the more they will learn. It brings up
one of my beefs about homeschooling - if homeschooling really means just
staying at home, I think it is very difficult for children to learn a lot.
(Most homeschoolers I know have their kids out in the community all the

I know some students who attended a centre which had great computers with
internet access and a teacher who knew a lot about how to utilize
technology. They didn't have a lot else though. A great number of these kids
grew up to be computer "experts" - of course - but those who weren't
enthused about this medium never found a niche or something to take hold of
and go with on their own....

So, in my mind, I guess as a parent and an educator, I feel my role is to
create a rich environment full of opportunity. I want to take direction from
the kids, and I have to be prepared that even if I set up a chemistry lab
many people won't use it...



Marko Koskinen wrote:

> I would like to start a discussion about lessons, mainly about should
> the teachers initiate lessons, to offer them even without direct
> interest from students. I know this is a hard question, so I wish people
> would really think it deeply before responding. I've been thinking about
> it for a long long time and I just haven't been able to make my mind.
> I appreciate all opinions.
> Marko

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