Carl Bereiter tells us that the real function of formal instruction is to give young people enough knowledge that they can build their own comprehensive and coherent understanding of the world. This is worth rolling around in our mind. It is decidedly a constructivist view of education. There are many implications here; one is that mastering the content of the curriculum is NOT the real end goal of instruction. There is a higher, supervening goal, one not controlled by the teacher. Learning subject matter is an indirect consequence of trying to understand, really understand, how the world works.


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