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Original RIE Manual

Learning and Teaching

Teaching is not a separate function. It is an everyday life experience. (Read How Children Learn [(1967)] and How Children Fail [(1964)], by John Holt.) Too many educators put pressure on parents to try to teach their infants earlier and earlier. What should infants really learn? If the parents are always telling the child what they are doing, the baby is learning about the real world around him. A safe environment in which the baby can move and explore is the kind of learning experience the child profits from the most. Teaching is one thing and learning is another. What the parents teach is themselves, as models of what is human, by their moods, their reactions, their facial expressions and actions. These are real things they need to be aware of, and of how they affect the child.

 

The RIE Manual for Parents and Professionals Part I: Practical Suggestions for Parents
Copyright © 1979 Magda Gerber

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Black and white ink drawing of an infant laying supine and reaching towards an adult hand which is reaching back to the infant

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