The Great Connections Seminar

The Great Connections Seminar
Discussing ethics

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Neurology of the Montessori Method

In the Montessori Method, we attempt to convey learning through as many senses and physical motions as possible, for more effective learning. Montessori captured this idea in her saying "The hand is the instrument of the mind." It's the basic reason we have so many materials for the children to work on.

I just discovered this blog with lots of information on the Montessori Method - and this informative post on neurological research which explains the basis of these principles.

And this article from the Dana Foundation "What dance can teach us about learning" summarizes research that's also relevant to this issue.

(Hat tip to Cynthia Gillis)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

"The Uneducated American"

Wonderful letter by Don Boudreaux in the New York Times about yet another article claiming the government doesn't spend enough on higher ed. As if!

"9 October 2009

Editor, The New York Times
620 Eighth Avenue
New York, NY 10018

To the Editor:

Ever-loyal to leftist dogma, Paul Krugman believes that there is no domestic
problem (be it fact or fantasy) whose solution does not require more
government spending. And so it is with the alleged poor shape of American
higher education
("The Uneducated American," Oct. 9).

But how is it that wide swathes of our lives work so well without such
spending? Grocery retailing, for example, receives no handouts from
government and yet serves customers with extraordinary efficiency and
creativity. Ditto for restaurants, hardware stores, the press,
language-learning software suppliers, and myriad other industries not
suckling at the state's tit.

Why, then, can education - a service that yields enormous benefits to those
who purchase it AND one, like churches (another successful industry!), that
is largely tax-exempt - thrive only as a charity case?

Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA 22030"

(Hat tip to Don Hauptman)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

And we wonder why we're in this mess...

Mises 1956 book The Anti-Capitalistic Mentality: ""The essential charge brought by the progressives against capitalism is that the recurrence of crisis and depressions and mass unemployment are its inherent features. The demonstration that these phenomena are, on the contrary, the result of the interventionist attempts to regulate capitalism and to improve the conditions of the common man give the progressive ideology the finishing stroke. As the progressives are not in a position to advance any tenable objectiions to the teachings of the economists, they try to conceal them from the people and especially also from the intellectuals and the university students. Any mentioning of these heresies is strictly forbidden. Their authors are called names, and the studnets are dissuaded from reading their "crazy stuff."" (emphasis mine)

Friday, October 2, 2009