Making Our Children More Humane

For my blog post today, I’m sharing a recent post I wrote for, an online community for people passionate about creating a better world. Here’s an excerpt from Making Our Children More Humane:

In his book, Teacher and Child, Haim Ginott shares a letter provided to all the teachers in a school on the first day of class by their principal. It reads as follows:

Dear Teacher:

I am the survivor of a concentration camp. My eyes saw what no person should witness:
Gas chambers built by learned engineers.
Children poisoned by educated physicians.
Infants killed by trained nurses.
Women and babies shot and burned by high school and college graduates.
So I am suspicious of education. My request is: Help your students become human. Your efforts must never produce learned monsters, skilled psychopaths, educated Eichmanns. Reading, writing, and arithmetic are important only if they were to make our children more humane.

As we ponder education reform, it is so important to ask ourselves, “What is the goal of schooling?” We at the Institute for Humane Education believe that it should be to foster the sort of humaneness this writer addresses; that we should educate our children so that they have the knowledge, skills and desire to be conscientious, compassionate choicemakers and changemakers for a healthy and humane world.

Read the complete post.

For a humane world,

Zoe Weil, President, Institute for Humane Education
Author of Most Good, Least Harm, Above All, Be Kind, and The Power and Promise of Humane Education
My TEDx talk: “The World Becomes What You Teach"

Image courtesy of downstairsdev via Creative Commons.

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