Friday, February 29, 2008

The Heart of the Matter Friday Meme - School & Life

“The difference between school and life? In school, you're taught a lesson and then given a test. In life, you're given a test that teaches you a lesson.”
~Tom Bodett

The Heart of the Matter meme for this week is to express my thoughts about the above quote. This quote carries two interpretations depending on if you go to traditional school or if you homeschool.
In traditional school, you are actually taken out of a natural learning environment in order to learn. From a book, you are taught about life and then in order to find out if you paid attention, you are tested to see if you retained intangible information. Some teachers are good about bringing life into the lessons so that when the test comes the information is more tangible.
In homeschool, children learn from life. Books are involved but there are so many more opportunities to learn from what life is throwing at you at the moment. Life is the natural learning environment. From the moment a child is born, they are learning through experiences and trial and error. When we allow a baby to struggle to get up and learn to stand, we are letting them learn on their own instead of telling them. As one becomes older, life’s “tests” or hardships teach us how to handle situations, or how to fix things that break. How many times as an adult, have we uttered the words, “Now I know what to do for next time?” How many times have we looked at someone else’s hardships and learned from watching them? I know for myself, the answer is more than I can count.
What seems like the more natural way to learn? Why is society so quick to put children in an unnatural learning environment to learn? Then claim that they will be more successful? I find it appalling that society says that children are better off in a classroom from preschool on, when the school system has proven itself a failure.



  1. Learning is such a natural thing - it is hard to see that desire stifled, isn't it? Great post.

  2. Great point! Thanks for sharing.


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