Feats and Foibles 2015

I've come to the end of my third year teaching, and it's time to reflect on the highs and lows of teaching middle school in Yerevan (February-June). The Good 1. Setting high academic expectations. Middle schoolers are just at the point where you can start teaching against the textbook. I really enjoyed reading and discussing …

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Montessori’s view of reason

I've written previously about the Socratic approach of  Northrop Frye. He says that the role of the liberal arts teacher is to create a structure of the subject matter around which the student can form their own understandings. This is exactly Maria Montessori's view, but her approach is informed by Rousseau and the rationality of scientific …

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Inquiry, Hegel style

‘Education to independence demands that young people should be accustomed early to consult their own sense of propriety and their own reason. To regard study as mere receptivity and memory work is to have a most incomplete view of what instruction means.’ G.W.F Hegel (1770-1831)   Check out Peter Worleys's  Philosophy Foundation - which trains …

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Literacy is Knowledge

City Journal writers such as Sol Stern often criticize "student centred" approaches to learning, especially those baptized by Marxist pedagogue Paulo Freire. While Freire's view of intellectual freedom in relation to Marxism is suspect, I think that this threat is basically ignored because university education lecturers read praxis as another instance of Dewey's experiential pragmatism. …

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