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Measuring, not teaching

Measuring, not teaching

A picture of Isaac Newton hangs in the Tate Britain gallery in London. Painted by William Blake, it depicts the scientist calculating the distance between two points using a pair of compasses. The image is widely believed to symbolise Blake’s contempt for rational thought. So focused is Newton on his measurements that he’s oblivious to the multicoloured, effervescent rock face beneath his naked bottom. Having never got the hang of slide rules or cosine tables, I’ve always liked this damning depiction of reason. It’s also a fitting allegory for current trends in teaching. Except that instead of compasses we’re holding progress charts, and most of us don’t teach in the nude.
see the William Blake picture here

read more from this TES article


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