Sunday, June 19, 2011

These days, it seems like educators are mostly concerned about making it easy for the mind to work. But I must urge that, while physical activities like hand crafts, gardening, dancing, etc., are useful to train the nerves and muscles to be ready and responsive, physical exercise does nothing to keep the mind alive. We also must not put the focus of children's education on drama--even when it's Shakespeare--or poetry--even when it's beautiful, lyrical poetry. Yes, children need these things, but they come into the world waiting to connect with lots of different things. They need to establish relationships with places far and near, with the expanding universe, with the long-gone days of history, with current social economics, with the earth we live on and all of its delightful plants and trees, with the affectionate families who love them, with their home country and foreign countries, and, most of all, with the highest of all relationships--their relationship with God. With all these things to learn about, only the most ignorant teacher will let his students spend most of their time on math, or crafts, or singing, or acting, or any one of a hundred specialized subjects that try to pass for a complete education.

--from Leslie N.'s paraphrase (pages 72-73) of CM's Volume 6

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