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My father taught in the wise way which unfolds what lies in the child's nature, as a flower blooms, rather than crammed it,... Options
Daemon
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 12:00:00 AM
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My father taught in the wise way which unfolds what lies in the child's nature, as a flower blooms, rather than crammed it, like a Strasbourg goose, with more than it could digest.

Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888)
MTC
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 6:40:45 AM
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The Strasbourg goose is the official bird of the Peoples Republic of China education system.
thomasanswered
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 8:26:42 AM

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Sounds good; however, Beethoven's father whacked him in the knuckles with each wrong note, thereby producing one of the greats. I don't know that the 9th Symphony would have been created by someone who had been allowed to bloom like a flower.
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 8:52:18 AM

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Beethoven's father may have taught him to play musical instruments but he did not teach him to compose. No amount of banging on the knuckles would do that.

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
tootsie
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 8:59:12 AM

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I've never heard a flower boom before......Anxious


and I disagree that whacking him on the knuckles produced one of the greats - more likely to produce a serial killer/father hater/sadist, who, when he became of age would have nothing whatsoever to do with music.

He was born with his incredible talent, his father was simply jealous of it.





I'm not lost for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost. Winnie-the-Pooh
thomasanswered
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 1:20:36 PM

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percivalpecksniff wrote:
Beethoven's father may have taught him to play musical instruments but he did not teach him to compose. No amount of banging on the knuckles would do that.


And yet, as many examples are about us of talent undeveloped, say wasted, one must wonder at the discipline learned from his father that allowed his composition to flourish. Later on, as we know, Beethoven forged ahead despite loss of his hearing. Such severe conditions (and we in our day imagine his upbringing to have been severe) aided in his character, which, in turn, saw Beethoven become the great composer.
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 1:42:59 PM

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I very much doubt your reasoning thomasanswered. Composition of such beauty as that of Beethoven cannot be taught... either by compassion or brutish behaviour. You seem to be arguing for unreasonable treatment of a minor as a way to enable him to flourish.

It is worthy of note that the basic meaning od discipline is correction, and that does not have to be of a physical nature.

Your comments are at best conjecture of a dubious nature. Beethoven senior was an alcoholic and given to excesses.




It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
thomasanswered
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 4:48:23 PM

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percivalpecksniff wrote:
I very much doubt your reasoning thomasanswered. Composition of such beauty as that of Beethoven cannot be taught... either by compassion or brutish behaviour. You seem to be arguing for unreasonable treatment of a minor as a way to enable him to flourish.

It is worthy of note that the basic meaning od discipline is correction, and that does not have to be of a physical nature.

Your comments are at best conjecture of a dubious nature. Beethoven senior was an alcoholic and given to excesses.




"Unreasonable treatment" need not be abuse. Discipline is correction directionally. Mozart's father started him out so soon that many today would charge him with removing the childhood, and yet we see the result. Bach was forbidden to play with the scores, causing him to strain his eyes copying by candlelight; this, too, would generate protests today, and yet the experience created a thankful, disciplined composer. Now, he had the Bach blood, I admit, that God-given je ne sais quoi, but the straitened conditions of his childhood disciplined the boy so that the man could thrive.

I cannot comment as to how to create composition of such beauty as Beethoven did, as I actually detest the Romantic Period for its excesses, perhaps because too many were, to use your words, "alcoholic and given to excesses." However, at least in my country, the lack of thoughtful discipline has resulted in many, many years of intellectually lean times. Children merely grow into taller children.

Something there is that adds to the innate genius. I offer that it is, reasonable or not, discipline.
Marissa La Faye Isolde
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 7:21:57 PM
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"My father taught in the wise way which unfolds what lies in the child's nature, as a flower blooms, rather than crammed it, like a Strasbourg goose, with more than it could digest."

Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888)

I would like to say that I agree that discipline is necessary for a child to develop within his or her being in order to have the power to accomplish what it is that lies within their nature to become, but whether the whacking of a child's knuckles is the best way to accomplish this, I personally disagree. I believe that what is taught with love is the most effective and most powerful way to teach something--not only to a child--but to anyone.
tootsie
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 6:33:31 AM

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[quote=thomasanswered

"Unreasonable treatment" need not be abuse. That is exactly what it is.

I cannot comment as to how to create composition of such beauty as Beethoven did - are you saying that if your father had used "unreasonable treatment" in disciplining you as a child, you may have been a genius yourself?


Something there is that adds to the innate genius. I offer that it is, reasonable or not, discipline. Poppycock.

[/quote]

http://www.childwelfare.gov/can/defining/disc_abuse.cfm



I'm not lost for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost. Winnie-the-Pooh
thomasanswered
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 8:46:21 AM

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tootsie wrote:
[quote=thomasanswered

"Unreasonable treatment" need not be abuse. That is exactly what it is.

I cannot comment as to how to create composition of such beauty as Beethoven did - are you saying that if your father had used "unreasonable treatment" in disciplining you as a child, you may have been a genius yourself?


Something there is that adds to the innate genius. I offer that it is, reasonable or not, discipline. Poppycock.




My inverted commas around the words unreasonable treatment are meant to suggest that the aforementioned use is a questionable one. Indeed, whatever your definition or mine might be will give way to future ones that, perhaps, would horrify both or either of us. The ancient Greek conception of proper care for the young would be treated as abuse today (at least, in my country), tomorrow may be again in use. Poor Beethoven, for all he suffered, suffered not that as far as the biographies I have read state.

My comment that I cannot comment upon compositional genius in no way implied that I myself possess any special powers. It is extraordinary that you inferred that.

I offer that such fervid treatment of such a delicate subject may indicate some prior experience that I can in no way be aware of, and so I choose, rather than prod in what may be another's nightmare, to jump to another thread, where intellectual repartee need not trespass upon too delicate reality.
Marissa La Faye Isolde
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 9:55:20 AM
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However, at the other end of the spectrum, the lack of respect and discipline in the U.S's school system is appalling.
Jimbob
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 11:00:29 AM

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Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888)
My father taught in the wise way which unfolds what lies in the child's nature, as a flower blooms, rather than crammed it, like a Strasbourg goose, with more than it could digest.
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hi, It’s a good possibility this quote is from her story book “Little Women” I had a girlfriend that had read it. She had a Catholic education and by god she could read write like you would not believe. Those nuns/teachers apparently crammed as much into those girls heads that was humanly possible. I dare say that she got a way better education than I ever had going to a public school, although in some cases it may have caused a little, shall I say rebellion. Of course Alcott received the majority of her schooling from her father, who was strict and believed in "the sweetness of self-denial". (willingness to forego personal pleasures). When she writes “as a flower blooms” it gives the quote a nice feminine touch and perhaps draws in away from male orientated.
leonAzul
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 11:41:16 AM

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This quote seems to have become something of a literary Rorschach test.

What I get from it is that the better sort of educator draws the knowledge from the student instead of trying to shove it in.

The result is a person who blossoms with integrity instead of a silly goose stuffed with what it can't even taste let alone digest.



"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 11:44:06 AM

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My simple point is not against proper discipline, but that discipline of any nature, cannot teach natural talent such as that possessed by Beethoven. Composition is mainly inspirational and flair based on a knowledge of the mechanics of music. Beethoven's father may have helped in the mechanics, but to suggest that his treatment of his son was responsible for Beethoven junior's abilty, and that without such treatment he would not have made it, is perverse.

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
leonAzul
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 11:58:16 AM

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Quote:
Amos Bronson Alcott (Bronson to his friends), an educator who had some ideas about teaching that were considered pretty outrageous at the time.

As a teacher, he believed that all knowledge and moral guidance come from inner sources, and that it is the teacher’s job to help these inner gifts to grow and unfold. He would hold conversations with his students, drawing out their ideas through questions rather than simply telling them what to think. He brought art, music, PE and the study of nature into the classroom at a time when no one thought these subjects belonged in school. And, unlike most teachers of his day, he thought it was wrong to punish children by hitting them. Surprisingly, when a student was especially badly behaved Alcott would insist that the wrong-doer hit him, the teacher, instead. After all, he said, if a student was doing poorly, it must be because the child had not been well taught.

Bronson’s daughter Louisa, who grew up to be a famous author, wrote about learning from her father: "I never went to school, except to my father or such governesses as from time to time came into the family. . . . so we had lessons each morning in the study. And very happy hours they were to us, for my father taught in the wise way which unfolds what lies in the child's nature as a flower blooms, rather than crammed it, like a Strasburg goose, with more than it could digest. I never liked arithmetic nor grammar . . . but reading, writing, composition, history, and geography I enjoyed, as well as the stories read to us with a skill peculiarly his own."


Retrieved 11 September 2012 from (http://www.questformeaning.org/page/kidtalk-september-2012)

"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
leonAzul
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 12:01:15 PM

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percivalpecksniff wrote:
My simple point is not against proper discipline, but that discipline of any nature, cannot teach natural talent such as that possessed by Beethoven. Composition is mainly inspirational and flair based on a knowledge of the mechanics of music. Beethoven's father may have helped in the mechanics, but to suggest that his treatment of his son was responsible for Beethoven junior's abilty, and that without such treatment he would not have made it, is perverse.


I agree, I thought thomasanswered was bizarrely incongruent with the quotation itself and profoundly at odds with what the Alcotts stood for.



"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Marissa La Faye Isolde
Posted: Wednesday, September 12, 2012 8:23:24 PM
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To Perceville: I understand and agree with the point you are making. I do think discipline is important, but no amount of discipline can bring forth what is not there to pour out--like a spring from its own source. I recall a nun in grade school who during music class walked up and down the aisles of desks in the classroom blowing intermittently on her pitch pipe, checking to see if we all were on pitch. And those of us who were off key were rapped in the head with her pitch pipe and made to hum the note until we were on key. Some children, no matter how much rapping they received, and humming they did, could not match the sound in the pitch pipe...I have a theory that because of this abuse, humiliation and embarrassment, they were unable to sing. I am actually surprised that any of us could do much more than croak, our throats were so dry from nervousness. And if we were just allowed to sing without fear and inhibition, I believe we they could have found the right pitch. However, despite this, there were those who I believe simply lacked the ability to sing in key. In retrospect, I wonder at the seriousness this teacher placed on a group of young children all singing perfectly in key to, Donkey Dear.
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