Library Index


Purpose of Education

Geoffrey Waldon on the purpose of education

“Education has one purpose only: that is, the prolongation of childhood.

“Adults - on the whole, especially in, I think probably in any society, but certainly in Western European society - adults and children are diametrically opposed in their attitudes.

“I mentioned in passing a while ago that children need to generate enormous quantities of effort. They need to do this because of - in fact, this is what motivates the child; in the early stages the child has to increase this [effort] simply to overcome the increasing load and the extra drag on that load. Part of that is the child actually engaging in using larger amounts of the child’s own space, which is necessary for the understanding of space.

“So the child making big movements is very effortful, so it's valuable from that point of view, and it's also space-invasive. So, the moving things about in space is very important and the longer the child engages in the activities the more effort is expended.”