Thoughts On Schools And Education

Everyone seems to have an opinion on schools and education. Some of these views are actually worth listening to and some can be quite witty.

I’ve collected together a bunch of my favourites or ones that have caught my eye. I’ll add to these in another post or posts as there are so many to delight in.

Here are a few to get us going:

We spend the first twelve months of our children’s lives teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve years telling them to sit down and shut up (Phyllis Diller).

Learning is the only thing the mind never exhausts, never fears, and never regrets (Leonardo Da Vinci).

My education was interrupted only by my schooling (Winston Churchill).

A child educated only at school is an uneducated child (George Santayana).

The trouble with most men of learning is that their learning goes to their heads (Isaac Goldberg).

It is important that students bring a certain ragamuffin, barefoot irreverence to their studies; they are not here to worship what is known, but how to question it (Jacob Bronowski).

If one cannot state a matter clearly enough so that even an intelligent twelve-year old can understand it, one should remain within the cloistered walls of the university and laboratory until one gets a better grasp of one’s subject matter (Margaret Mead).

Anyone who tries to make a distinction between education and entertainment doesn’t know the first thing about either.

Anyone who tries to make a distinction between education and entertainment doesn’t know the first thing about either (Marshall McLuhan).

The test of a good teacher is not how many questions he can ask his pupils that they will answer readily, but how many questions he inspires them to ask which he finds it hard to answer (Alice Wellington Rollins).

Any subject can be taught effectively in some intellectually honest way to any child at any stage of development (Jerome Bruner).

I taught Bill and Hillary Clinton when they were at Yale. Let me rephrase that. Bill and Hillary Clinton were in the room when I was teaching at Yale (Judge Robert H. Bork).

A schoolmaster should have an atmosphere of awe, and walk wonderingly, as if he was amazed at being himself (Walter Bagehot).

A poor surgeon hurts one person at a time. A poor teacher hurts 130 (Ernest Boyer). 

One looks back with appreciation to the brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings. The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child (Carl Jung).   

Educational television should be absolutely forbidden. It can only lead to unreasonable disappointment when your child discovers that the letters of the alphabet do not leap out of books and dance around with royal-blue chickens (Fran Lebowitz).

You live and learn. Well at any rate you live (Douglas Adams).

A gifted teacher is as rare as a gifted doctor and makes far less money (Tom Lehrer).

Children’s alphabet blocks should contain a warning: Letters may be used to construct phrases and sentences that may be deemed offensive (David Handelsman).

A school bus driver is someone who thought he liked children (John Rooney).

Whatever people may say about Cambridge, it is the best preparatory school of Oxford that I know (Oscar Wilde).

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