Where the Red Fern Grows

What did Billy's dad mean when he said "there is more to an education that reading and writing"?

Quote by Billy's Dad

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Although Billy's dad recognised the importance of a formal education, he was very much a man of the land. Exploring, hunting and respect for the land meant a necessary education. Understanding animals both wild and domesticated was important for a boy's intellect as well as his spirit. Billy perused this type of education vigorously throughout the novel.