Muddle can't teach the young : LETTERS

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TOM Peters' advocacy of "muddle" as the route to learning must have struck a huge discord with many teachers and parents ("Muddle makes the world go round", Business, 29 January). At one point, "teachers" (admittedly in quotes) were advised to resist the temptation to intervene when the learner needs help. Applied to the world of education, this would mean that children should not be corrected when they make spelling mistakes, norhelped to learn arithmetic, let alone taught the difference between right and wrong. Such theories were tried in the world of education and are now widely discredited because the children did not acquire the basic building blocks from which the more creative aspects of learning can then develop.

If Mr Peters had made it clear that his comments were intended for the adult world of innovation in business and commerce, then he may have had a valid point. But somewhere along the way, someone (whether it is the learner or someone else close by) has to make sense of the "muddle", and take hard-headed decisions about which bits are worth keeping.

As usual, Mr Peters' article was thought-provoking, but I question whether the series has anything to do with "excellence".

D Hodgson Alloa, Scotland

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