Hi listers, Can you guess who wrote the following statements and when they were written? The author has done a marvelous job of defining why the lecture method of teaching is so widely used while at the same time warning of its limitations and drawbacks. In addition the author provides a very strong philosophical and practical basis for cooperative learning, something many people have asked for in previous discussions. I was considering giving a prize to the first ten correct replies, something like a trip to the Bahamas during the winter months, but that is financially impractical so your prize will have to be the satisfaction of knowing your were correct. I will send out the answer at the beginning of the posting of responses to CL series #6-policies, which shall follow wihin a few days. Some list members will just have to let their excitement build over the next several days in anticipation of that material arriving. A little like waiting for Santa. On a serious note I would love to hear your comments on the quotes below. Send them to the list to see if we can generate additional discussion about CL or to me directly and I will compile them. Regards, Ted [log in to unmask] The following paragraphs are taken from the same source and are continuous and unedited. Quotation marks are left out for convenience. WHO IS THE MYSTERY AUTHOR??? Intentional education signifies, as we have already seen, a specially selected environment, the selection being made on the basis of materials and method specifically promoting growth in the desired direction. Since language represents the physical conditions that have been subjected to the maximum transformation in the interests of social life- physical things which have lost their original quality in becoming social tools- it is appropriate that language should play a large part compared with other appliances. By it we are led to share vicariously in past human experience, thus widening and enriching the experience of the present. We are enabled, symbolically and imaginatively, to anticipate situations. In countless ways, language condenses meanings that record social outcomes and presage social outlooks. So significant is it of a liberal share in what is worth while in life that unlettered and uneducated have become almost synonymous. The emphasis in school upon this particular tool has, however, its dangers-dangers which are not theoretical but exhibited in practice. Why is it, in spite of the fact that teaching by pouring in, learning by a passive absorption, are universally condemned, that they are still so intrenched in practice? That education is not an affair of "telling" and being told, but an active and constructive process, is a principle almost as generally violated in practice as conceded in theory. Is not this deplorable situation due to the fact that the doctrine is itself merely told? It is preached; it is lectured; it is written about. Bit its enactment into practice requires that the school environment be equipped with agencies for doing, with tools and physical materials, to an extent rarely attained. It requires that methods of instruction and administration be modified to allow and to secure direct and continuous occupations with things. Not that the use of language as an educational resource should lessen; but that its use should be more vital and fruitful by having its normal connection with shared activities. "These things ought ye to have done, and not to have left the others undone." And for the school "these things" mean equipment with the instrumentalities of cooperative or joint activity. For when the schools depart from the educational conditions effective in the out-of-school environment, they necessarily substitute a bookish, a pseudo-intellectual spirit for a social spirit. Children doubtless go to school to learn, but it has yet to be proved that learning occurs most adequately when it is made a seperate conscious business. When treating it as a business of this sort tends to preclude the social sense which comes from sharing in an activity of common concern and value, the effort at isolated intellectual learning contradicts its own aim. We may secure motor activity and sensory excitation by keeping an individual by himself, but we cannot thereby get him to understand the meaning which things have in the life of which he is a part. We may secure technical specialized ability in algebra, Latin or biology, but not the kind of intelligence which directs ability to useful ends. Only by engaging in a joint activity, where one person's use of material and tools is concsiously referred to the use other persons are making of their capacities and appliances, is a social direction of disposition attained. The natural or native impulses of the young do not agree with the life-customs of the group into which they are born. Consequently they have to be directed or guided. This control is not the same thing as physical compulsion; it consists in centering the impulses acting at any one time upon some specific end and in introducing an order of continuity into the sequence of acts. The action of others is always influenced by deciding what stimuli shall call out their actions. But in some cases as in commands, prohibitions, approvals, and disapprovals, the stimuli proceed from persons with a direct view to influencing action. Since in such cases we are most conscious of controlling the action of others, we are likely to exaggerate the importance of this sort of control at the expense of a more permanent and effective method. The basic control resides in the nature of the situations in which the young take part. In social situations the young have to refer their way of acting to what others are doing and make it fit in. This directs their action to a common result, and gives an understanding common to the participants. For all mean the same thing, even when performing different acts. The common understanding of the means and ends of action is the essence of social control. It is indirect, or emotional and intellectual, not direct and personal. Moreover it is intrinsic to the disposition of the person, not external or coercive. To achieve this internal control through identity of interest and understanding is the business of education. While books and conversation can do much, these agencies are usually relied upon too exclusively. Schools require for their full efficiency more opportunity for conjoint activities in which those instructed take part, so they may acquire a social sense of their own powers and the materials and appliances used.