Why We Should All Be Hands-On.

Bill Lucas, Guy Claxton

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Institutional prejudice against practical learning, and in favour of abstract reasoning, has never seemed more present in England's education system. Assumptions persist that reasoning requires more "intelligence" than activity, and that learning to be abstractly argumentative is a better preparation for life than learning to solve practical problems in immediate, concrete situations. Yet most of us see that the nation will only prosper if it can produce people who make things, as well as people who shuffle paper. We need workers who have technical skills and know what to do when they encounter unexpected problems. The swing in secondaries towards English Baccalaureate subjects is a shift away from the practical towards the academic. However, practical learning is not just about vocational courses. It is, and should be, a part of more traditional subjects, too.
Original languageEnglish
JournalTimes Educational Supplement
Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2012


  • practical learning
  • pedagogy
  • education

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