I was just taking in my daily blog reading and checking out Shop Teacher Bob's blog and I decided to click on one of the links on his page. Shop Teacher Bob and I seem to see eye to eye on education and work ethic, not to mention he and I both seem to attract interesting projects, so his links were worth a little investigation. The link on his page led me to the Wisdom of the Hands blog. Within the first few posts, I found myself intrigued by the writings and citations. I've copied a sampling of his writing below, but make sure to go over and read his blog if this happens to strike a chord in you.
"One thing that all students seem to know about school is that it is artificial, that in some cases it has only tenuous connection to real life. It is claimed that education is preparation for real life. We know the statistics tell us that those with more education make more money in real life than those who do not. And yet we know when we question the efficiency of formal education that nearly 50% of teachers with masters degrees in education leave the field within 3-5 years. All kinds of students move on to fields other than those in which they invested heavily in time and money to enter...
So that is where my friends Elliot's and Charlie's new book Leaving to Learn comes in. We learn best when we can connect what we are learning to real things that we are actually doing in real life to benefit family and community.
Is that so hard to explain to explain to anyone? Dewey knew it and said it. Saloman and Cygnaeus and Pestalozzi explained it and demonstrated it and devised educational methods to make use of it. There is no better way to learn than by doing real things, and by being of real value to family and community. The great shame of modern education is that we squander our most valuable resource... that of being purposefully engaged in real life. The strategic engagement of the hands in learning can fix all that."
It doesn't get much better than that. I'm still exploring Doug's blog, but you might be interested in some of the things he writes about if his words above speak to you the way they do to me.