Friday, 2 July 2010

Teaching Standards

The person most responsible for my science teacher (Mrs Sommers) being in tears when I hooked the Bunsen burners up to the taps or supplied the rubber-bands for the rubber-band fights in the classroom was probably the most brilliant teacher of more recent times. I salute him and take off my hat to the MASTER TEACHER. What a novel idea! Teaching without needing to read books, GENIUS! I include some of his quotes below.

"The hope I have here is simply summed up: To stir your imagination, awaken your interest, arouse your curiosity, enliven your spirit - all with the purpose of bringing you to ask, as young Maxwell put it, "What's the go of it?" - or, as Kepler had it, "why things are as they are and not otherwise". Or, more simply in my own phrase, why is it so?"

Professor Julius Sumner Miller - In producing his series called "Why is it so?", was condemned and ridiculed by his peers, but loved and adored by his audience/students.

"All of a half-century ago-when I was a little boy on the farm in my native New England – I remember asking all kinds of questions. What is the Earth made of? Why is the sky blue? Why is the sunset red? How does a bird soar? Why does a brook gurgle? How does an earthworm crawl? Why is a dewdrop round? Why does corn pop? Why does a wood fire crackle? And a thousand like questions. To a few I got the answers in reading. To some I got the answers in dialogue with my Mama and my Papa and with my teachers. Some I thought out – not too well, to be sure – but I was learning to think. By this device – ever questioning – ever uncertain – I gathered up a rather massive body of knowledge."Professor Julius Sumner Miller, American science populariser, born on May 17, 1909

"The schools destroy the holy spirit of curiosity."Professor Julius Sumner Miller; interview, Simply Living magazine, Vol. 2, No 10

"I'm all for having the leaders of nations meet on the open field with a sword."Professor Julius Sumner Miller; ibid (think about it, all the leaders and only one sword)

"Enthusiasm. Without it we are dead."Professor Julius Sumner Miller

"Oh, yes! I find this place where I get the mostest light – the mostest light. The mostest. That's the superlative of 'most'. I'm reciting something of Euclid. Beautiful – you should read it!"Professor Julius Sumner Miller

"My wife engages in some imaginative adventures, and she put that together from turkey bones. Isn't that fantastic? Look at that. Look at that creature. Out – born out of her mind."Professor Julius Sumner Miller

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