May 5, 2014

“Indeed, we might summarize all these points by saying that schoolchildren have been deprived of the opportunity of actually doing mathematics in any sense even thinly related to the working activity of mathematicians. Thus, it is not surprising that children resist, that they seldom carry over their training informal manipulation into less formal situations, and […]

April 7, 2014

“In The Children’s Machine I told a learning story about how I helped a student in the “resource room”—which is where they send the kids who are supposed to have learning disabilities—of a public school in one of our big cities. I was able to guess why this kid was looking all around him with […]

March 6, 2014

“I noticed that a lot of the discussion of computers was dominated by questions like, just to take one example, when they do Logo kids get confused about whether “turn” in Logo means turning this way or turning that way. Yes, they do – but that’s a consequence of it being an incidental, of spending […]

June 27, 2012

“It is self-indulgent of us as teachers to say that we can spend 3 hours a week with a student and give them wonderful experiences. What about the billion other children on the planet? What about the rest of the hours for that child? Our task is to identify powerful ideas that have been dis-empowered. […]

April 18, 2012

“I have noted elsewhere (Papert, 1996b), that School’s math can be characterized by the fact that its typical act is making marks on paper. Explorations in the Space of Mathematics Education develops this idea by imagining an alternative mathematical education in which the typical activity begins with and consists of creating, modifying, or controlling dynamic […]

March 19, 2012

“Almost all parents think that it is a good thing for their kids to do something called “learning math” and are therefore in the market for software that will “teach kids math.” So far, so good. But what is not so good is that their ideas about what math is, and why the kids should […]

December 13, 2011

“In 1971 Channel 5, a local Boston TV station, produced a program on children in new learning situations and included a segment on Logo. Here is that segment. My one regret is that Seymour was not talking with a child during the filming. By the way I am indebted to youTube and one of its […]

December 9, 2011

“Actually the educational software industry does know best about something, but about something other than the best ways to learn mathematics. It has excellent knowledge about what can be most easily sold to parents. Software that drills the kids in using numbers is easily recognized by the most uninformed parent as “math.” That kind of […]

October 25, 2011

“Let’s go back to Dewey for a moment. Intellectual growth, he often told us, must be rooted in the child’s experience. But surely one of the fundamental problems of the school is how to extend or use the child’s experience. It must be understood that “experience” does not mean mere busy work: two children who […]

October 5, 2011

“This praise for the concrete is not to be confused with a strategy of using it as a stepping-stone to the abstract. That would leave the abstract ensconced as the ultimate form of knowing. I want to say something more controversial and more subtle in helping to demote abstract thinking from being seen as “the […]