"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Saturday, June 14, 2014

We need to remember that the impediments to self-directed learning are by design

Alfie Kohn

"When teachers are told exactly what and how to teach, when they feel pressured to produce results, they in turn tend to pressure their students. That is exactly what another study found: teachers who felt controlled became more controlling, removing virtually any opportunities for students to direct their own learning." — Alfie Kohn

As always the wonderful Alfie Kohn is right on target. What's left out of his important analysis is that these conditions are exactly what our ruling class—namely, but not limited to the Gates, Broad, and Walton Family Foundations—wants. From their self-serving perspective, self-directed learning is for the scion of the 1%, not for us working class rabble. Completely control both educators and their pupils through fear (Vergara), and deployment the banking model of pedagogy (Common Core State Standards CCSS), and you control access to the one thing that could allow us to overthrow our oppressors.

Works Cited
Freire, Paulo. Pedagogy of the Oppressed. New York: Continuum, 2000. Print.
Kohn, Alfie. The Schools Our Children Deserve: Moving Beyond Traditional Classrooms and "tougher Standards". Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co, 1999. Print.

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