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.
Follows how children fail
Watching children learn
Games and experiments
Better to let kids improvise
Keep around objects in household kids can touch
Small kids just start and try even if get wrong immediately and then fix by repeated trials. Older kids wait and use mind to make sure right on first attempt. Lose willingness to just try and improvise.
Instinct for workmanship. Not about just being done but to do as well as can or for personal enjoyment of the process.
Practice doing it wrong for fun
Diary entries of watching kids learn
Doing things for sake of doing
Patient and persistent experiment to learn speech
Not being afraid of sounding or being wrong
In time kids work out correct speech themselves without anyone correcting them
Stop correcting kids mistakes. They will figure it out.
Kids as intelligent from early age and to be respected.
Don’t make kids realize how little they know or how much u know or what u can do
Don’t check up on what kids learned. Stop testing them
Let kids detect and fix own mistakes. Find out for self if correct. Don’t create dependence on teachers.
Read books too complex for kids so can learn from them also
Signs around house with words naming objects and places
Don’t make a fuss over timetables for reading or learning progress
Don’t force if afraid
Art and math
Use real paints and tools
Unstructured explrations with things
Keep curiosity well supplied with good materials
Fantasy allows understanding of real world
To test reality
Don’t force trying to fantasize
Kids ok with not having all answers
Learning and love
Growing without schooling
How children fail