Thoreau’s comment about education will resonate today with many teachers and students, but I am glad he included the word ‘often’.  There are many teachers who have (or create) the freedom to turn meandering brooks not into straight-cut ditches but into expanding estuaries.

‘What does education often do?  It makes a straight-cut ditch of a free, meandering brook.’  19 September 1850

Source: Henry David Thoreau, The Journal 1837-1861, Damion Searls (ed.), preface by John R. Stilgoe (New York: New York Review Books, 2009), p. 42

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