"What children need is not new and better curriculum but access to more of the real world; plenty of time and space to think over their experiences, and to use fantasy and play to make meaning out of them" John Holt
John Holt ( 1923- 1985), teacher, writer and leading figure in educational reform, wrote ten books, including How Children Fail, How Children Learn, Never Too Late and Learning All the Time.
His work has been translated into fourteen languages. How Children Learn, and its companion volume, How Children Fail,
have together sold over two million copies in their many editions and influenced a generation of teachers and parents. His letters have recently been collected and published under the title, A Life Worth Living.
John Holt's deep insights into the child's mind have become increasingly appreciated as we try to make both schools and homes better places for children to learn.John Holt was an American teacher who, with Bill Hull, a fellow teacher, started a classroom project to observe children. Their observations and John Holt's notes from 11 years of teaching formed the core of his books and philosophy on education.
He believed the main reason children did not learn in school was fear: fear of getting the wrong answers, of being ridiculed by the teacher and classmates, fear of not being good enough. He maintained this was worsened by children being forced to study things that they were not interested in.
John Holt coined the word unschooling in 1977 to mean learning that does not look like school learning, and learning that does not have to take place at home. His book 'teach your own' is about homeschooling.