I recently finished a classic in child development: How Children Learn by John Holt. It reminded me a lot of Richard Feynman's writing, like Surely You're Joking Mr. Feynman!, because it was written as a collection of observations, stories, and lessons learned in very straightforward language. I loved the references to typewriters (which sound like really good objects for kids to explore) and other somewhat dated/classic items.
It seems like he was one of the first proponents of the natural abilities and curiosities of kids and giving them the opportunity to lead their own educational explorations. I can see how a lot of other more recent parenting authors have built upon his foundations.
My full notes on the book are below.
I'm a fan of Michael Lewis's books, and I just finished reading The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds by Michael Lewis. I had enjoyed his book The Big Short before as well as some of his later ones.
This one focused on the unique relationship between Amos Tversky and Daniel Kahneman, who conducted some of the most impactful psychological research over the past 50 years, coining now-famous effects like framing, endowment, and others. Daniel's book Thinking, Fast and Slow was an amazing treatise in psychological research and cognitive biases and errors.
This book by Lewis had its focus less on the research and more on the backgrounds of the two protagonists and their intensely creative and productive relationship, as well as the problems it eventually ran into. The title refers to how our minds often use fantasy to try to "undo" parts of reality, and that creates various feelings like frustration, regret, and envy (and how a lot of this wishful thinking is very human but not very rational).
I enjoyed the book and reading the stories about how these guys got started, met, and worked together. My full notes are below.
A while ago, I had read a newspaper article about parenting books inspired by different foreign countries. One of the books mentioned was There's No Such Thing as Bad Weather: A Scandinavian Mom’s Secrets for Raising Healthy, Resilient, and Confident Kids by Linda Akeson McGurk. I recently read it and enjoyed it, though it has a lot of overlap with other parenting books I had read before, such as Einstein Never Used Flashcards, Bringing up Bebe, and How to Raise an Adult. The main title of this book also reminds me of similar lessons about always playing outside despite any weather in The Art of Learning.
What I most enjoyed in the book were the various actual stories and details about schools and outdoor activities in Sweden, such as forest schools and various traditional games and groups that meet and enjoy the outdoors. I felt that most of the book could be summarized very succinctly and went on too long about pretty simple points (spend more time outside, less screen time, free range parenting, etc.). Nonetheless, it was an enjoyable read, even though I learned fewer new things from it that I hadn't heard of before.
My notes on the book are below.