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Posted On 09-14-2009 4:11 PM
Your Name: Doug Aigner
Email Address:
Location: Middlebury, Vt.
Comment: Alfie, I'm surprised you haven't taken on Richard DuFour and the PLC movement... all based on very Milton Friedman-esque premises, promising to make education "feel the sting of the market", and abounding with quotations and platitudes from this or that IBM executive. That thinking should be pretty moribund, given last fall's events. C'mon, how 'bout it? Is a permanent war on education what we really need?

Posted On 09-14-2009 1:08 AM
Your Name: Uzma Rauf
Email Address:
Organization: Teachers' Resource Center
Location: Karachi - Pakistan
How did you find our site?: Read through an article and references to this writer's writings in one of TRC's publication

Posted On 09-11-2009 11:09 AM
Your Name: Louise Murray-Leung
Email Address:
Location: Hamilton, Ontario
How did you find our site?: frequent visitor and Kohn reader
Comment: Alfie, you and your many faithful readers will enjoy this article posted a couple of years ago, but which I just discovered today.  It is an interesting observation of the effects of an education system that moved towards standardized tests and compressed curriculum some years ago, and whose early 'victims' are now in university.

Posted On 09-07-2009 10:59 AM
Your Name: Mary-Helen Rossi
Email Address:
Organization: Merge Education
Location: West Chester, PA, US
How did you find our site?: Link
Comment: Competition, teaching to the test, coercion, oppression. How are we as a society to function if we continue like this? I applaud your work and think we like-minded souls should bring our remedies together and create the critical mass that's needed to make real reform happen...

Posted On 08-31-2009 6:51 PM
Your Name: Barry
Email Address:
Organization: Edmonton Public Schools
Location: Edmonton
How did you find our site?: google
Comment: After reading "No Contest" a year ago I tried introducing a non-competitive aspect to some of the games we play in our Phys.Ed. class. Prior to this change, two of the boys in the class were extremely competitive and this often lead to explosive and even violent outbursts when their team was losing by a point or two. 

The change I made added the rule that those who scored a goal would have to move to play with the opposing side. The change this brought to the attitude of these two boys was remarkable. They became much more focused on skills and play-making. The outbursts ended - game playing became fun!

I mentioned this to a teacher who taught PE to a "behaviour" class. He also introduced this change to his games and noted the same positive change in his students behaviour when winning was no longer the primary goal.

Posted On 08-31-2009 3:58 PM
Your Name: Amy Valens
Email Address:
Organization: Tamalpais Productions
Location: Forest Knolls Ca
How did you find our site?: google search for Alfie Kohn
Comment: Alice Evenson is right when she points out  that working teachers often don't have time to find out what is happening beyond the walls of their own schools.  That's why we need  the many dedicated teachers who are retired and can have a wider vision to step up and protest high stakes testing and the whole direction that Arne Duncan,  President Obama, their partners in the educational testing and publishing business and all too many other who may well know better, are taking us.  One place where you will find ideas on how to speak truth to power is at

Posted On 08-27-2009 8:38 AM
Your Name: Jeannie Mackenzie
Email Address:
Organization: Conditions for Learning
Location: Scotland
How did you find our site?: Google
Comment: Enjoyed the Homework Myth!  Have been grappling with these ideas for a while but this is the first academic expression of them I have found.   Wish we had someone talking abou them in Scotland.

Posted On 08-25-2009 9:37 PM
Your Name: Concerned Mom
Organization: Concerned Mom
Location: SF, California
How did you find our site?: through my child's teacher's links page
Comment: i was so sad to see bo's comments on your web page - i was hoping michele would take up the fight to fix our schools as she commented in an interview to oprah how she wants her girls to be "treated like children" not princesses.  if this is truly a core value to the obama's then why not let them play like children instead of robots?   we're at a charter and the sad thing is they test, keep the kids longer, and shorten recess just like the public schools - i loved our preschool because they incorporated 2 play times.  why are we punishing our own children?  please michele if you are out there and listening please be a stand up girl and fix our schools!

Posted On 08-18-2009 12:25 PM
Your Name: Samantha
Email Address:
Organization: Flametree Communication
Location: Reading, Berkshire, UK
How did you find our site?: Read the books, searched for the site

Thanks for all you do and for your brilliant insights on learning. Your book, Unconditional Parenting, really made me think about the way I behave with my beloved children. I've seen some great results from following your guidance, coupled with trusting my own instincts on a more unconditional approach to our communication with one another. Thank you for leading the way. Your work is vital.

Posted On 08-13-2009 10:56 AM
Your Name: Alice Evenson
Email Address:
Organization: Retired teacher
Location: Minneapolis MN USA
How did you find our site?: An NCLB site
Comment: Our city newspaper printed "failing" schools this week and this time it upset me enough to read further. Read your 2004 article "Test Today, Privatize Tomorrow" just yesterday, made a hard copy, passing it around. It's time a workshop went around to educate on this topic; as a former teacher there wasn't much time to scan the internet and read about the subtle manipulation going on in our public schools re standardized tests. Your statement "...the agenda (promoted by William Bennett) locks into place a model that not only deprofessionalizes teachers but confuses teaching with the transmission of facts." SO TRUE! Summary of article if anyone has not read it - the subtle or maybe not so subtle movement toward privatizing our public schools and humiliating public schools. My neighbors' children have received 4 year scholarships from our inner city public schools over the years and have become artists, lawyers, and political science professors to name a few success stories. THANKS TO THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS!!

Posted On 07-29-2009 11:44 PM
Your Name: Lisa Daugaard
Email Address:
Location: Kirkland, WA
How did you find our site?: AK books
Comment: Bless you, Alfie Kohn.  I have a bright, hard to squash almost five year old, and because of you, she will have a fighting chance to stay that way.  There may be few pockets of viable resistance to the standards/homework/testing regime, but I vow to find them for my daughter & help expand them for others.  I want to live in a world where you are in charge of education.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart, and please keep doing what you're doing.  You are a beacon of light.

Posted On 07-26-2009 6:44 PM
Your Name: ryan slate
Email Address:
Location: Kingston, ON
How did you find our site?: back of your book
Comment: Your philosophy on learning is interesting, but I would have to say I disagree with your outlook. The kinder, softer, gentler approach that educators are using in schools is eroding the students opportunity for character development.

Posted On 07-21-2009 7:29 AM
Your Name: Susan Gaissert
Email Address:
Location: USA
How did you find our site?: I just typed your name!
Comment: I would like to share the article I just wrote for the Democratic Party web site at Although Alfie Kohn is not mentioned in the article, his article in The Nation magazine at the end of 2008 inspired me. My article is titled "Fixing Education" and you can find it here:

Posted On 07-13-2009 10:22 PM
Your Name: Jo Dennis
Email Address:
Organization: Department of Education, NSW, Australia
Location: Tea Gardens
How did you find our site?: google
Comment: Oh My Goodness!! Can you please come to Australia and talk to our government!!! They are making us use an A-E grading system again (this archaic system had been gone for many years in Australia) and are currently strongly considering league tables to compare schools too! Our teachers are considering striking over this action. As if it's not bad enough to compare the kids!! Please talk to them! they won't listen to anyone here. I am very worried for the future of our children. I teach year 3 and 4 (8 -10 year olds). I love my job but am very concerned. Your articles were like a breath of fresh air.

Posted On 06-28-2009 11:15 AM
Your Name: Beth Waleski
Email Address:
Organization: Daemen College M.Ed. Student
Location: Oakville, ON
How did you find our site?: I have become an AK disciple
Comment: It happened again.  A good friend of mine started picking on Arizona's teachers (though I live in Canada I am from AZ.)  It seems that all the complex problems in education that cannot be solved by teachers, are once again getting blamed on them.  Mr. Kohn, I know you have issues with certain teachers, and rightfully so.  But, with all the pressure on them, do you agree that the public should keep picking on them?  Lord knows, the public doesn't pick on them for the same reason you do!

Posted On 06-19-2009 12:54 AM
Your Name: Bård Mathiesen
Email Address:
Location: Norway
How did you find our site?: Facebook appreciation group
Comment: I have two questions (or requests if you rather): When is Alfie Kohn going to make an appearance at TED ( He ranks way up there with Dan Ariely and others when it comes to impacting the way I see the world around me. TED could provide an important channel to impacting more people.

And second, will Kohn ever be coming to Norway to give talks or courses? If so, sign me up!

Posted On 06-15-2009 8:25 AM
Your Name: Beth Waleski
Email Address:
Organization: Daemen College (M.Ed. Student)
Location: Oakville, ON
How did you find our site?: Been reading Kohn books
Comment: Right now, I am definitely going through an Alfie Kohn phase.  I got a reference to him from one of my classes, saw several books when completing an assignment, and now am reading his books with no requirement other than my own.  I would love to see many of the reforms he speaks of in current schools.  I am now at the start of my student teaching semester, and one fear I have is that I'll want to do his stuff in the classroom and get in trouble for it:(.  I really think it's doable, though!

Posted On 06-14-2009 4:35 PM
Your Name: J.C. (John Clifford) Armbruster
Email Address:
Organization: freelance writer
Location: Olympia, WA, USA
How did you find our site?: Referenced in Wikipedia's No Child Left Behind entry
Comment: I'm writing an article on the effects of graduating, versus not graduating, from high school with a conventional diploma. ....

Do you have any suggestions on how I should research the long-term personal consequences of not graduating with a high school diploma?  Society at large, including those who proposed and pushed through the national "No Child Left Behind" Act, assume that we should be getting as many kids as possible to get a high school diploma.

But that goal carries with it a lot of unstated values. I mean, how can we honestly link the skills learned in school to those used in real life to work at a job, plan our finances, raise our kids, and drive on the right side of the road?  On a related issue, what life and career pathways demand a high school diploma? I'm assuming that you can't apply to most community and four-year colleges and unversities without letting them confirm you graduated from a high school. Or am I wrong about that, too?  I'm beginning to wonder if getting a high school diploma is not, in the end, something that has any direct correlation to how we turn out in life.

[Edited for length]

Posted On 06-09-2009 2:22 PM
Your Name: Mary O\'Brien
Email Address:
Organization: none
Location: Rhode Island
How did you find our site?: google
Comment: I know people who have kids who have behavior problems. One of the parents always seems to think that loading punishments on kids, to make them uncomfortable, will change them, but it doesn't. I know a boy who steals, lies, and sometimes wrecks property. One of his parents accuses the other of not being hard enough on the boy. Why don't they try to get at the root of his problem instead?

Posted On 05-30-2009 4:11 AM
Your Name: Dianna Wilson
Email Address:
Organization: Business Education teacher in training
Location: Glastonbury, CT
How did you find our site?: books
Comment: I am trying to re-educate parents in the Hartford area who are being exposed to weekly John Rosemond ravings in the Hartford Courant. We need you to come speak here, and I would like to get in touch with your fans in this area. Is there an Alfie Kohn fan club from which I could get some contacts? If not, I would like to start one.

Posted On 05-29-2009 6:16 PM
Your Name: Darcy Dahl
Email Address:
Organization: darcy dahl / design
Location: Bronx, NY
How did you find our site?: Google search for Alfie Kohn, "No Contest"
Comment: Please consider social media dissemination and marketing! If you value Kohn's work, include links to this site for your facebook friends, and your tweet followers!

Posted On 05-10-2009 5:18 AM
Your Name: Doug Freese
Email Address:
Organization: Jeffco School District
Location: Denver Colorado
How did you find our site?: google
Comment: I'm reading The Schools Our Children Deserve. I find it annoying and thought provoking. I haven't been able to find Mr. Kohn's educational background. I see that he thought high school for a number of years so perhaps he has a degree in education? Any elaboration would be appreciated to better understand the background you bring to your writings.

Posted On 05-09-2009 2:01 PM
Your Name: Anna Pocock
Email Address:
How did you find our site?: after reading your book Unconditional Parenting
Comment: I'm finding this book very inspiring and thought-provoking. It has turned my parenting (I have 2 under 4s) on its head and, I hope, made me a gentler, less controlling and more loving mother. But that's not to say I don't have occasional bad days and I am definitely still learning how to parent well. Today was one of those days, when I found my children particularly challenging and tiring, although I did try to dig deep and be the parent I wanted to be. I thought you might have smiled at the outcome of this lunch-time battle with my 3.5 year old. When my daughter was refusing to eat a stick of cheese she'd just requested, my initial reaction was irritation at the waste of food and concern that she hadn't had a nutritionally-balanced lunch. As soon as I'd given her the cheese, she started playing with it - shredding it into tiny pieces and rolling it up like Play-Doh. Forecasting where these actions were going to lead, I said that I wanted to see her eating not playing with her food. She said she fully intended eating her cheese but she needed to explore it first. I let her continue but 5 minutes later, she still hadn't eaten a single piece of the cheese. I started getting a bit wound up now and insisted that, having asked for the food, opened it and told me she was going to have it, she really should eat at least half of it before getting down from the table. My daughter has an iron will and needless to say, she refused to eat any of the cheese. Without resorting to the anger I was feeling, I sat down and explained to her that the reason I was upset she wasn't eating the cheese was that it was such a waste of food. She wanted to know why it was a waste, so I told her that as well as the money that I'd spent on buying it, the milk (that the cheese was made from) was a precious resource from a generous cow. How would that cow feel knowing that her milk had been taken to be turned into cheese that just ended up in the bin? She listened to what I said but bounced away unburdened by the incident. A little while later, I was cleaning up the kitchen and ditched some leftover rice that we'd had for the previous night's supper. My inquisitive daughter asked me what I was throwing in the bin. On hearing my answer she said, "So now we've both wasted something, Mummy". A lesson for both of us I guess. (I don't think I acted particularly admirably by the way, like I said, it was a testing day and I hope to do better tomorrow)

Posted On 05-05-2009 11:44 AM
Your Name: Deanna Dallas
Email Address:
Organization: student
Location: oregon
How did you find our site?: google
Comment: In my writting class we had to chose from 4 essays to search and then reform it in our own words. I was the only one who chose your essay called" Why competition". I am a single mother of 6 children and have preached endlessly to them about the "sport" of thier choice and the way if feels to win and lose. You have helped me  in my theory of competition and the negative effects it has on our belief system. For myself I chose years ago not to engage in sports as I am one of those very competitive people who has the ability to go way over the line to "win". I just wanted to say thank you for taking the time to write this essay.


Posted On 04-27-2009 2:43 PM
Your Name: Joe Silverman, MD (psychiatrist)
Email Address:
Organization: Van Zandt VAMC
Location: Altoona, PA 16602
How did you find our site?: Google
Comment: It drives me crazy that evidence and expert opinion have so little impact on society. Case in point: the President's advocacy of P4P. As you suggest, it may be because he chose the wrong Secretary of Education. I hope you mailed what was essentially an Open Letter to the President. Management courses teach the value of treating employees like people, not machines. But managers almost never apply these lessons. Have you written about why the lessons of social science are ignored? My guesses: ignorance of evidence; indifference to evidence when "common sense" dictates otherwise; personality characteristics that make intimidation and reward/punishment feel right.


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