"Children do not need to be made to learn about the world, or shown how. They want to, and they know how." -John Holt

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Sugar Gliders!

Our latest animal obsession? Sugar gliders! (It's always something isn't it?)In my pursuit of the perfect pet for Simone I found these guys. They are smart, love to be held, bond to their humans, live a long time (15 years!), and are the cutest things you ever saw. Being nocturnal, they will sleep in a pouch around your neck (or pocket or hood) all day long only becoming active in the evenings when they'll need at least 2 hours of playtime a night.Just as their name suggests, they can glide through the air using their "patagia" the extra skin membranes that extend when in flight (much like a flying squirrel).Unlike squirrels, they are actually marsupials native to Australia and New Guinea.
Simone impressed the breeder with her instinctual ability to handle the tiny creatures calmly and confidently. "She's only FOUR?"Now it's only the price tag holding us back. We are currently in saving-for-gliders mode. ;)

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"By nature people are learning animals. Birds fly; fish swim; humans think and learn. Therefore, we do not need to motivate children into learning by wheedling, bribing, or bullying. We do not need to keep picking away at their minds to make sure they are learning. What we need to do - and all we need to do - is to give children as much help and guidance as they need and ask for, listen respectfully when they feel like talking, and then get out of the way. We can trust them to do the rest."
John Holt
"In the end, the secret to learning is so simple: Think only about whatever you love. Follow it, do it, dream about it...and it will hit you: learning was there all the time, happening by itself." -Grace Llewellyn
"What we want to see is the child in pursuit of knowledge, not knowledge in pursuit of the child."
George Bernard Shaw
Real, natural learning is in the living. It's in the observing, the questioning, the examining, the pondering, the analyzing, the watching, the reading, the DO-ing, the living, the breathing, the loving, the JOY. It's in the joy. ~Anne Ohman
"How could youth better learn to live than by at once trying the experiment of living?" -Henry D. Thoreau