Sunday, December 26, 2010

Crippled by books

There was a time when the only way for a kid to get information from outside his home and neighborhood was books. (Think Abraham Lincoln, log cabin in the woods far from centers of learning.) Now books tend to be outdated, and is better for information. If Abraham Lincoln had had full-color DVDs of the sights of other countries, of people speaking in their native accents and languages, and of history, he would have shoved those books aside and watched those videos.

When someone thinks books are the one crucial step to any further learning, then books and school have crippled that person's ability to think expansively, and to see what's unfolding in front of them in the real world.
photo by Sandra Dodd, the other day in Texas


  1. ..agree. But dont books feed the imagination more than the DVD's , or any other 'visual' source ? I have always found , for example, books more engrossing than movies based on these books...books have always given me 'time' to think over, form opinons, analyse. I would like to think of books are a very powerful medium despite the new age sources...thoughts ?

  2. It's okay to disagree, but it's less okay to say "agree" and then disagree.

    Be brave! (And read the link before posting disagreement, please. )

    I see from your profile you're only three.... or I see that you're not being open and honest about who you are. :-) Be brave!

  3. Well, maybe I should have clarified - I agree with the first part upto "...Now books tend to be outdated, and is better for information." That is why "agree".

    What I dont agree with is not considering books as a crucial part, for reasons I mentioned. Though this does not mean I would force my child to read them if he did not enjoy them (not sure if this is what you are suggesting). I would possibly try to make them more interesting. With the amazing amount of variety in books today it should be easy (thankfully my child does love reading)

    Also like many other unschooling links of yours which I have loved reading , I have already read about the one you mentioned ..but my main disagreement was in ref to this particular post.

    Amongst many things that I might lack "being brave" is probably the least, but something seems to have offended you !

    Also sometimes what might sound like 'disagreements are merely doubts, inviting more clarifications. Particularly since I agree so much with what is otherwise written by you.

    Assumed that it would be percieved as a question from a learning mom..Somewhat surprised and sad that it was percieved as dishonesty.

    Vedaant's mom
    (pls trash my comments if they take away value of what you have tried to convey)

  4. -=-What I dont agree with is not considering books as a crucial part...-=-

    Ah. I never said "crucial." that's your word.
    For me, the only crucial part is learning, and there is *not* more learning in reading books than in other input, especially for three year olds. I've been listening to audio books a lot lately. That's not reading. It requires a computer and the internet; I don't own the physical books.

    Discussion and disagreement are often where others learn the most (those reading and not involved), but the best place for such things is the Always Learning List at I'll take this discussion there.

    As to the bravery I mentioned, when someone clicks on my name, on an internet post, it goes to information about me, which leads to more honest and open information about me. Yours leads to "I am almost 3 yrs old..."

  5. Oh doh! I did say "crucial," but it was in saying I didn't think books were the ONE crucial step. Sorry.

    "When someone thinks books are the one crucial step to any further learning..."

    I don't think any one item or set of item or mode of input is "the one crucial" anything, in unschooling. It takes a great range of choices and freedoms, and when a parent thinks books are *IT* then unschooling is harmed by that. It is made weaker and smaller.


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