Katharine Butler Hathaway was born in 1890 and developed tuberculosis of the spine as a child. She spent her entire childhood in her bedroom pinned to a board in hopes that her spine would grow straight. (It did not.) Her extraordinary reaction to her affliction was to develop a quick mind, an openness to change and skill at writing. Here is a quote from her:
"I invented this rule for myself to be applied to every decision I might have to make in the future. I would sort out all the arguments and see which belonged to fear and which to creativeness, and other things being equal I would make the decision which had the larger number of creative reasons on its side. I think it must be a rule something like this that makes jonquils and crocuses come pushing through cold mud."
Nick Terrones, author of the popular new book, A Can of Worms: Fearless Conversations with Toddlers, seems to be adopting a similar philosophy to Katharine Butler Hathaway. He writes:
"Education for me, is an institution for hope. Children never fail to offer their thinking in the most beautiful and honest of ways. If I carry a shred of hope for their future, then I must shoulder the responsibility to address their wonderments, insights, and understandings, as uncomfortable as they may make me."
Fearless Conversations with Toddlers
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Toddlers ask big, bold questions every day. Teachers and caregivers give shape to the world as they respond to those questions. The conversation unfolds in an electric moment—an awkward, exciting, bewildering moment. A Can of Worms is a guide and support for celebrating these most important conversations. Have no fear! Take a deep breath, and respond.
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