The Bayeux Tapestry and how we absorb | Day 115 of my 2023 Journal
I find it fascinating to see my unschooled children engage with the tapestry and the Museum of History and Art in Bayeux.
I remember history class.
I remember reading the same sentence over and over; nothing would stick.
It repelled, like throwing water on a goose, as we say in my language.
I also remember going for walks with my uncle, how he would talk and explain, and how everything we would see was a prompt for him. I loved it, and to this day, I remember most of it.
The way history is taught in schools, dripping from a curriculum, emerging from books written for “children” underestimating their intelligence will, for most students, forever be irrelevant. It is just like math. There will always be one or two who love it, and they will most likely become the next generation of teachers, but for the rest, it is a pain.
Don't get me wrong. I believe Goethe was right when he said: “He who cannot draw on three thousand years is living from hand to mouth.” I think all knowledge will make life more fun, nuanced, and interesting. And I study history my way now, all the time.
What I do not believe in is pushing it down people's throats, as if feeding a foie gras goose. There is no way learning will ever be meaningful if it is not:
- Makes sense
- Is relevant
They engage on all levels. They are interested in the wool, the story told, and the history of kings. They notice the ships look like Viking ships and listen to an almost 2-hour podcast beforehand.
They ask questions. They share information with their friends. They dive in deep, even though it is the second time they come.
At the Museum of History and Art, they were frustrated with not having enough time and asked if we could come back one day on our own so that they could read ALL of the signs.
There is no structure as to how they learn, there is no ambition, and there is no pressure, yet they do absorb the past 3000+ years of world history as we live our lives.
Love and light
Where are we now?
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