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Lord Baden Powell the Educational Revolutionary...

Baden-Powell, the founder of the world-wide Scouting movement, preferred to learn his lessons from nature rather from a classroom.  B.P. was not an academic success. His school reports read: 1)Classics: Seems to me to take very little interest in his work  2)Mathematics: Has to all intent given up the study of mathematics  3)Science: Pays not the slightest attention, except in one week at the beginning of the quarter  4)French: Could do well, but has become very lazy; often sleeps in school.

Baden-Powell was a bit of a loner in school, somewhat reserved though never unpopular.  Given a choice, he preferred the solitary pursuits of exploring the woods round the Charterhouse school in Surrey, England. There he learnt  how to snare rabbits and cook them in secret with a smokeless fire, how to use an axe,  how to creep silently through the bush, how to hide his tracks, how to identify the different kinds of animals and plants, and how to climb a tree and hide from the school authorities.  B.P. said that it was in those woods that he gained most of what helped him later in life to find the joy of living.

It is no wonder that years later Baden-Powell that the object in Scouting "was to wean (the boys) from indoors and to make the outdoors attractive to them."  B.P. described Scouting as a school of the outdoors.  Scouting, said B.P., was not a science, nor a military code. Rather "it is a jolly game in the outdoors,  where boy-men can go adventuring together as older and younger brother, picking up health and happiness, handicraft and helpfulness."

Baden-Powell understood at a very deep level what really helps boys to learn, and what just gets in the way.  Why has it taken the educational world so long to fully accept Baden-Powell's revolutionary ideas about learning?  Click to find out more...

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