Episode 75 Susan Engel on learning, curiosity and school


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What role does curiosity play in learning, and could school foster curiosity in kids, instead of reducing it, or even, in the worst case, extinguishing it? What should be the main goals of all the years children and adolescents spend in educational environments, and why?

Susan Engel is a developmental psychologist and a senior lecturer in psychology at Williams College, Massachusetts. She has studied how children learn and tell stories, develop language, and how curiosity develops and manifests itself in and outside of school.

In this episode Lars talks to Susan about two of her books, The End of the Rainbow and The Hungry Mind, both published in 2015.

Books and articles mentioned in this episode:

Susan Engel, The Intellectual Lives of Children, Harvard University Press (in print, to be published in January 2021)

Susan Engel, The Children You Teach: Using a Developmental Framework in the Classroom, Heinemann Pubs., 2018

Susan Engel & Samuel Levin, A School of Our Own, The New Press, 2016

Susan Engel, The End of the Rainbow: How Educating for Happiness Not Money Would Transform Our Schools, The New Press, 2015

Susan Engel, The Hungry Mind: The Origins of Curiosity in Childhood, Harvard University Press, 2015


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The music is by Arne Kjelsrud Mathisen, see the facebook page Nygrenda Vev og Dur for more info.


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