Literature/1982/Adler

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Adler, Mortimer J. & Paideia Group (1982). The Paideia Proposal: An Educational Manifesto. New York: Simon & Schuster.

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w: Mortimer J. Adler

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w: Paideia Proposal
  • The essence of the proposal involved three necessary types of learning and respective types of teaching: knowing what, knowing how, and knowing why: One of these was lacking from present-day practice after kindergarten and first grade.
  • Didactic instruction (traditional lecturing) was ... the primary mode of teaching being applied in the traditional system. Its purpose was for the acquisition of organized knowledge or facts. Adler placed the least value on this form of knowledge, arguing that it generally fades away with time [...]
  • Coaching is performed so that the student may acquire skills, such as reading, writing, speaking, listening, calculating, problem-solving, estimating, measuring, and exercising critical judgement. Skills are habits, not memories, thus are much more durable than memories, especially memories not based upon understanding. [...]
  • The Socratic method (extended discussion) is the only path to understanding basic ideas and values. This cannot be acquired through didactic teaching or coaching. The basis of discussion cannot be textbooks, but must be works of art and books that deal with ideas and values. Adler states that our teachers are totally untrained for this. [...]

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Gradient-optical-illusion.svg
The shade of the bar looks invariant in isolation but variant in context, in (favor of) sharp contrast with the color gradient background, hence an innate illusion we have to reasonably interpret and overcome as well as the mirage. Such variance appearing seasonably from context to context may not only be the case with our vision but worldview in general in practice indeed, whether a priori or a posteriori. Perhaps no worldview from nowhere, without any point of view or prejudice at all!

Ogden & Richards (1923) said, "All experience ... is either enjoyed or interpreted ... or both, and very little of it escapes some degree of interpretation."

H. G. Wells (1938) said, "The human individual is born now to live in a society for which his fundamental instincts are altogether inadequate."