Random Thoughts on Education from a Sage Veteran

Beginning in November and running through the new year Bruce Schauble, of the blog Throughlines, wrote a series of four outstanding reflections titled “On Education.” Since leaving the classroom, he took some time to compose some of the more compelling thoughts about teaching I have read lately.

“On Education: One” briefly examines the indeterminacy and unpredictability that make the profession an exciting place to work for both teacher and students. I particularly like his analogy to the writing process and all the great quotes.

Part two is a fantastic blend of nostalgia and insight, meditating on Robert Frost and a talk he gave at Amherst College in 1931 called “Education by Poetry.” The Frost transcript alone was a newly discovered treasure for me, but Schauble’s commentary provides a clean distillation of Frost’s most acute remarks, as well as an enlightened conclusion.

In part three, he draws a chord from a presentation by a Stanford Technology Ventures Program professor about creative thinking and entrepreneurship to the core of lesson planning and design. It wrestles with the reality that both depth and breadth are truly needed in a classroom and striking some balance is often the key.

The final installment is an extension on the theme of needed balance in classroom. Beginning with an homage to the late Donald Murray, including a link to a great remembrance from the New Hampshire Writing Project, takes a critical eye at how the assessment game can often limit options and affords little down time for revision of process, projects, whatever. Ultimately, he uses a wonderful metaphor to articulate the dual, dynamic nature of the kind of balance he believes are at the heart of a great educational experience.

I include this series to share some really lovely, thought-provoking prose that caught my attention. I read a lot of online material, and I thought this to be some of the best blogging I have recently read. I believe it to be really worth a look by others, so much so I even commented which I don’t do as often as I should. Enjoy.


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