John Holt (1923–1985)

American teacher and education theorist. Born in New York City, Holt attended boarding schools in New England, served aboard a submarine in World War II, and taught for many years, first in high schools in Colorado and Massachusetts and then at Harvard University and the University of California at Berkeley. Throughout his career he was a firm believer in the natural human ability to learn, a harsh critic of the damaging effects of schools on children, and an enthusiastic proponent of homeschooling. His numerous books include How Children Fail (1964), How Children Learn (1967), The Underachieving School (1967), Teach Your Own (1981), and Escape from Childhood (1984). At the age of forty he took up the cello, a learning adventure he recounted in Never Too Late: My Musical Life Story (1979). See also holtgws.com.