The Underachieving School is a collection of essays and articles written and compiled by Holt, each brimming with inspiration and ideas on how to teach. The Underachieving School has 49 ratings and 8 reviews. Jacqueline said: Excellent, one of the best and most enjoyable nonfictions I’ve ever read. Incred. THE UNDERACHIEVING SCHOOL John Holt was born in New York City on 14 April He was educated at a number of schools in the States and at Le.

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The Underachieving School

Not So Golden Rule Days. The historical and legal justification for schools has been that they are good for children, every child and each child. The law was passed to prevent such exploitation.

Fortunately, some educators are beginning to realize this. There should be no burden of proof on the parents to show that they can ynderachieving facilities, companionship with other children, and all the other things the schools happen to provide. He is an architectural, portrait, fashion, and commercial.

The Underachieving School – Sentient Publications

Not long afterward we were discussing the boy. The most interesting thing in the classroom – often the only interesting thing in it – is the other children. Children want and need and deserve and should be given, as soon as they want it, a chance to be useful in society. Usually they came before the sentence had been copied once.

Having said this, I will now say that I think a big, unabridged dictionary is a fine thing to have in any home or classroom. During the spring she really astounded me, however.

By lunchtime, when most of the children were still busily writing, the board was full. Testers say that testing techniques are being continually improved and can eventually be perfected. If they make a big fuss, someone is going to complain and there will be trouble all around.

What the reformers, like most conscientious teachers, do not see is that each of us has to forge his own master key out of his own materials, has to make sense of the world in his own way, and that no two people will ever do it in the same way. Jerry Heverly rated it it was amazing Apr 19, I read once that in this country, and Great Britain too, the societies for the prevention of cruelty to animals have far more members and money than the societies for the prevention of cruelty to children.


First, most students, particularly poor students, do not read the corrections on their papers; it is boring, even painful. Was this a teacher talking? In some cases a non-prestige institution may have fewer first-rate scholars or teachers, but it is probably true that such as there are have more time for and interest in their really able and curious students. Suppose we then ask the children which photo has more people in it.

On the little cards you put the words or the pictures that the child is going to look at. When they were free of this worry and could let themselves go, they found hidden and unsuspected talents.

There is no large market for the labor of young children; very few, if any, parents would want to keep their children home from school for economic reasons. Some English teachers, when they first hear about private papers, object that students do not benefit from writing papers unless the papers are corrected. What was wrong with making sure that children understood everything they read? I have by now been in a good many school buildings – hundreds, many of them very new, but I can count on the fingers on two hands those in which the halls were made more alive and human by art or decoration, of the children or anyone else – pictures, murals, sculpture.

Schools are bad places for our kids, says John Holt in his book “The Underachieving School”

Priya Prakash Varrier’s viral video got much more attention than it deserved! It is no more possible to have open, friendly, and mutually helpful relationships between most teachers and students than it is between prison guards and prison convicts – and for exactly the same reasons.

To keep kids in school who would rather not be there costs the schools an enormous amount of time and trouble, to say nothing of what it costs to repair the damage that these angry and resentful prisoners do whenever they get the chance.


To the extent that they are in the one they cannot be in the other. Perhaps all you can do is try not to let your johm become too bored or discouraged or worried by what is happening in school. The distinction, indeed opposition, we have made between education and work is arbitrary, unreal, and unhealthy.

This is too bad. What the children really learn is Practical Slavery. Many years ago I worked in the movement promoting the idea of world government. Most of the time the trouble lies deeper. If this goes on long enough, they forget how to turn themselves up, to listen with all their attention. My sister was the first person who made me question my conventional ideas about teaching English.

But this is because so much of their teaching is based on getting high-test scores; if they reduced the importance of exams and marks, they would reduce the need for getting only those students who were good at taking exams.

Many of them were tremendously excited by this. I have found it revealing over the past few years to enquire of children and adults whether there are, or were, more children or more people in their families.

On returning to the States in after traveling in Europe for a year he caught in various schools in Colorado and Massachusetts. They behave as reasonably, sensibly, and considerately as anyone else. Every day in class he asked his students to write without stop ping for about half an hour.

He needs time to talk and think about who he is and how he got to be that way and what he would like to be and how he can get there.