In which I quote myself…

At the end of the day it is hard to type and I want to go to the Spur to meet Lib. It has also been effin’ FREEZING, never good for PD. Which is my excuse for quoting from a letter to Brett Booth of Demonpuppy instead of writing an essay.

The letter was mostly on dinosaur images and modern public schools and their avoidance of ‘strong’ evolution– something I got in Catholic schools (he explained that Creationists do not consider Catholics Christian– oh…)

Anyway, I made one old point I would still back. Which is:

“I once said [1970’s] my ideal curriculum would consist of biology, history, the classics, and how to use a chainsaw. Adaptable to region and culture but you get the drift…

“I now think I would add how to train a dog, hawk, or horse.”

Some Original Educational Advice

From Father Joseph Rutler via The Corner.

“…I’d encourage your youngest one to abandon kindergarten altogether. Almost everything I learned was learned outside the classroom, and school itself interrupted my education. Moreover, school locks you in with your peers. That is a mistake. One’s social circle should never include one’s equals. From my earliest years I found children uninteresting and always preferred the company of adults. This was an advantage, because I got to know lots of folks who are dead now whom I never would have known if I had waited until I was an adult. – So I have a collective memory – and oral tradition – that goes back to the eighteenth century, having spoken with people who knew people who knew people who knew people who lived then. – The only real university is the universe and a city its microcosm. That is why an expression like “New York University” is foolish. New York City is the university….Instead of school, children should spend some hours each day in hotel lobbies talking to the guests. They should spend time in restaurant kitchens and shops and garages of all kinds, learning from people who actually make the world work….One day spent roaming through a real classical church building would be the equivalent of one academic term in any of our schools, and a little time spent inconspicuously in a police station would be more informative than all the hours wasted on bogus social sciences. Formal lessons would only be required for accuracy in spelling and proficiency in public speaking, for which the public speakers in our culture are not models, and in exchange for performing some menial services a child could learn the violin, harp, and piano from musicians in one of the better cocktail lounges, or from performers in the public subways….So I urge you to keep your child out of kindergarten, because kindergarten will only lead to first grade and then the grim sequence of grade after grade begins and takes its inexorable toll on the mind born fertile but gradually numbed by the pedants who impose on the captive child the flotsam of their own infecundity.”

I read somewhere else recently that those who can already read in Kindergarten are viewed with suspicion by the educational establishment as they undercut the need for the system. I could read at “grade 8 level” then, thanks to my parents, Kipling, Life magazine, and Roger Tory Peterson, so maybe I was already launched on a life of rebellion…

Another thought: his opinions sound remarkably like Betsy Huntington’s. The OLD northeast…