Friday, December 7, 2007

The School and Society By John Dewey

I am reading Nancie Atwell's In the Middle to get a better sense of how Dan Rothermel approaches teaching reading and writing. As a department, we are trying to find ways to improve integration among courses. The question for me is how can we build on what students have learned or are learning in Dan's class?

Atwell writes about her reasons for organizing her classes as reading and writing workshops. She quotes John Dewey's School and Society to make a point about life in and out of school. I wanted to see the context of the quote so I searched in Google and found a copy of that book. I also found a new selection tool. So I test it here as an exploration of how to incorporate it into my work. The tool is a selection box that lets me select a passage and then put the snippet into my blog or a notebook. I can choose to insert image or text. Since the copy that Google scanned included a penciled highlight, I chose image:
Text not available
The School and Society By John Dewey
The anonymous reader's pencil mark gives me the sense that others have participated in this written conversation.
I don't yet understand the html code that Google Books transferred to my blog. I'll see when I publish it.

After seeing the published version of my post, I was still confused about the html. I have now resolved the issue by understanding how to use the tool. And while I am thinking about this larger community, I note that Google Books gives me more of a sense of writing community in its popular passages listing:

Popular passages

Page 27
possession of our school system. To do this means to make each one of our schools an embryonic community life, active with types of occupations that reflect...

Page 28
him with the spirit of service, and providing him with the instruments of effective self-direction, we shall have the deepest and best guaranty of a larger...

I am part of a larger community of practice that spans both time and space. Google lets makes it easy to connect to others in this community.

1 comment:

SC Spaeth said...

When I first tried to search for this passage using Google, I used the phrase "From the standpoint of the child". It produced no hits. I changed to "great waste" and found it. After reflecting on the causes, I now see the problem. When I look at the text version "View plain text" I see:

From thf; stanrlppipt of the child, the great waste in the school comes from his inability to
utilize the experiences he gets
the ideas, interests, and activities that predominate in his home and neighborhood^

Apparently the pencil lines in the original copy of the book that they scanned caused the optical character recognition (OCR) process to make errors. Note that the OCR successfully read a hyphenated word. These new tools provide helpful alternatives to defacing books.