I have been reading(and re-reading) John Milton Gregory's The Seven Laws of Teaching, sharing his lucid commentary with teachers. And then it occurred to me that some of his insights are so spot on that parents too would benefit from reflecting on even just a few.
"A truth can be fully seen only in the light of other truths. It is known by its resemblances."
"Truth must be clearly understood before it can be vividly felt."
"Attention [in the learner] will be steadiest when appeal is made to the strongest faculty. One person can give steady attention to objects sense,another to objects of the imagination, and a third to processes of reason."
"No one has more language than he has learned, and the acquisition of a large vocabulary is the work of lifetime."
"More than half the work of teaching is that of helping the child to gain a full and clear expression of what is already known imperfectly. It is to aid him to life into full sight, and to round out into plain and adequate sentences, the dim and fragmentary ideas and perceptions of childhood."
"The child's language, then, is not only the measure of its knowledge, but it is the virtual embodiment of the elements of that knowledge."
"The new and unknown can be explained only by the familiar and known."
"The two great coordinate aims of education are to acquire knowledge and to develop power."
"True teaching is not that which gives knowledge, but that which stimulates pupils to gain it. It may be said that he teaches best who teaches least; or, better still, he teaches most whose pupils learn most without his teaching."
All of which reminds me that the intellect of a child is raw and incomplete. No matter the circumstances or cultural conditions around us, the mind of a child needs formation. It is the duty of teachers and parents to develop the power of seeing the whole, and avoiding the childish tendency to reduce reality to an incomplete perception.
Most Sincerely in Christ,
Derek Tremblay, Headmaster