Robert Hansen (RH) posted Jul 7, 2013 8:35 AM (GSC's remarks interspersed): > > On Jul 6, 2013, at 8:30 PM, GS Chandy > <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: > > > I'd be most grateful if you'd explain to be just > how "decency" enters into the issue. > > A teaching activity would involve a teacher TEACHING. > It would have been indecent if Richard insinuated > that these students were being TAUGHT science. > Thank you for your explanation. I believe you may not have adequately appreciated just how *teaching* happens to form a part of the dyad 'teaching + learning' - how it NEVER can stand alone as "TEACHING". I try below to explain in pure prose (which is an ineffective way of doing it).
If we should use the above as insight into *teaching*, we would readily understand that the *teacher's role* is primarily to 'facilitate' the student's learning. (Yes, I know that the verb 'to facilitate' is in rather poor odor these days - this is primarily because it has not been adequately understood by many of those who had taken 'facilitation' up as a political 'slogan' of sorts. What I mean by *facilittion* is rather different from that).
As *teaching* is inextricably bound up with *learning*, what happens is that the *teacher's role* is primarily to get the student INTERESTED in what is required/needed to be learned. Yes, the *teacher* then provides a variety of guidance to enable the student to *learn*. In this 'avatar', what happens is that the student largely teaches him-/herself - the *teacher* 'guides' and 'facilitates' - the primary *teaching* task is to ensure the student retains interest through all the difficulties that will inevitably be encountered; to enable the student to overcome boredom, etc, etc; to convince the student of the need to do plenty of exercises, etc, etc.
The above is a QUALITATIVELY different process from the conventional TEACHING. I fully accept that a great many 'good' or 'great' teachers do a lot of the above, more or less developing the whole methodology (of *teaching*, as a part of the 'teaching+learning' dyad) from personal intuition and empathy with the task the student is trying to do, i.e., to *learn*.
However, very few of the insights that the 'good' or 'great' teachers develop are effectively communicated to others (because there is no effective 'language' through which those insights may be communicated). This is probably why the schools of education are ineffective (as claimed by some - I don't know, as I've never experienced anything in them. However, I have no reason to believe that they're not doing the same old traditional BS).
On the other hand, using 'p+sg' it is possible to communicate just what *teaching* may be - and it is not difficult to help others learn just how to become 'good' teachers.
(I also fully accept that very few of us can ever become 'great' teachers. However, most teachers (i.e., the conventional ones) can definitely become 'good' and very 'competent' teachers).
The article, from which you have quoted some part, was rather superficial - but the article on the whole more or less OK - AT THAT LEVEL.
Your comment, "Education run amok" may well be justified. The real issue would be to discover ways to keep the student interested and engaged in the process of *learning*.
GSC > From the article... > > ?For many students who are not successful, this is > just something that they know how to do,? Emdin told > WNYC?s radio show SchoolBook. However, some students > had to work just as hard at mastering lyricism as > they did at mastering topics like DNA, the Big Bang, > or Darwinism. Tara Ware, a teacher at Validus > Preparatory Academy in the Bronx, told The New York > Times that the program also taught her students > problem-solving and hard work. ?All my kids love rap, > but some aren?t good at it, so they really had to > work at it,? she said. ?It took more time to write a > rap than write a three-page paper.? > > No doubt they had to work at writing rap songs, but > to call this STEM and Science Genius? To say that > this makes them love science? How can they love > something that they were neither taught nor learned? > This is like a very cruel joke played on very > unfortunate children. No knowing parent would > tolerate such a thing. But alas, these children don't > generally have knowing parents. > > Education run amok. > > Bob Hansen