He recalls filling a plastic shopping bag full of mud from his home, and taking it along to school to play with. Rather than reprimanding him for making a mess, his teacher simply adjusted her lesson to incorporate the mud into an educational building exercise.
“Instead of punishing me, she used it as a stepping stone or a launching pad to teach the rest of the class,” said Scott.
Experiences like this developed thinking skills that extended far beyond textbook education.
“They gave me experience. They gave me the opportunity to find out for myself,” says Scott. “I know the school system is based around knowledge… but I think my teachers also gave me wisdom. I think wisdom is more important than knowledge. Wisdom gives you the ability to look at things with different perspectives.”
Perhaps most significantly, though, they also gave him responsibility.
He recalls another particularly memorable occasion at age 11, for example, where he was given his very own stall at an education industry expo event. Alongside displays of the latest in the education system, Scott was seated at a booth where he sat crafting masks and puppets from his own collection of salvaged materials and scraps.
“I was this scruffy little messy kid in the corner, with a bunch of glue, and paint… and I just sat there making masks and puppets, with all the teachers that stopped by. Me, teaching adults how to make a mask, out of… rubbish,” he says, with a chuckle.
“Later, I gave up working on the table, and I got them to crawl around on the floor… I’d decided it was much more fun to do it on the ground, under the table, and for some reason that kinda made things better? There were a handful of teachers that had a really fantastic day with me.”