Thursday, September 3, 2009

Noddings Chapters 1-4

Socrates and Plato seemed more interested in student learning than teaching. The method of dialogue used by Socrates meant to direct a student to think towards a particular opinion. It was the questions in the social/political domain that fascinated him that he used to discuss with his pupils. The purpose was for the pupils to know the right ways so that they could do the right. Plato believed that students should be taught to their capacities and so not all should have exactly the same education. He also made functional categorize of education for 1) workers and artisans, 2) soldiers 3) rulers.

Dewey seems to have greater influence on today’s education. Dewey considered education as a means for growth. He considered experience as what provides education and something which make student interested to engage in a new experience. The idea of growth however has been questioned by other philosopher because it seems aim less. Dewey’s considered growth as an end of its own and we must not make rigid directions for the growth. This is in contrast to Plato who categorized education and considered education as a means of helping the people learn the skill of their role on the society.

Dewey considered knowledge as the information or skills that we apply intelligently for inquiry. According to him humans use material from their prior experience to guide present inquiry and build new knowledge. This is similar to Piaget’s constructivism who called prior knowledge as schemata within which new knowledge assimilates or accommodates.

Analyzing teaching Komisar and Dewey believe that teachers can make students aware of various possibilities but it is the students who have to be involved in the learning process to reach to their own understanding. Dewey has even suggested that students should be involved to the level of constructing their own learning objectives. This is a important view. It hard to own the objectives set by someone else for you but if you as a student have identified or discovered the objectives of your learning on your own then it means a whole lot more for you.

The critical theory of Paulo Freire sets the objectives for education for it to be liberating for the student to know how dominant group can exploit their literacy. The education should help students be able to identify their own problems and should be able to solve them.

My reflections:

I think the conception of education, teaching and learning has seen evolution over time though the old traditions are still prevalent. In the time to come students will not only decided which broad field of study they want to study in but will also be involved in discovering the objectives of their learning which are specifically suitable to their context and prior knowledge. Education will help them become more critical and have the skills with knowledge to find solution that are specific to the problem in hand.