Education! What is it?

Education is something that we all go through as we grow up but is one of those things that can be difficult to define. Today I had the opportunity to think about what it is and delve a little deeper into the term. Education is creating environments where learning can flourish and people can evolve and grow as human beings.  The key to this is that those people are in control of their own destiny of what they learn and use an internal locus of control to, at their own pace, proceed systematically through a learning process.  They are not being force fed information and treated like robots, where they are expected to learn at a set pace and instead can work collaboratively with educators or self educate to become more informed.

Picking up on working alongside others, Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development is prominent here as it explores how knowledgeable others, such as educators or parents can scaffold learning to advance it on to the next level of progression. Also a learner can independently reflect on their prior experiences to scaffold their own learning. This can be as simple as a child learning to ride a bike and their parent having an important role in this. The best learning, where you’re motivated to explore deeper and try different avenues, comes when one is free to make discoveries themselves, via problem solving and practical experiments. It’s such a shame when this is taken away from children because of, as Freire (1972) puts it, they are ‘schooled’ and not allowed the opportunity to access unfounded information. It could be argued that there’s a possibility that they may never be able to discover for themselves and some things may be out of reach but surely more can be gained from the explorative path of trying to find a solution and not getting it than just being drip fed it.

This again links to another term introduced today, ‘Educere’ which translates to ‘draw out from within’. This is an important issue as it’s dealing with making sure all learners are able to share their thoughts, but also have the time to discover and let all children in a Primary school setting feel included and comfortable in performing their own critical thinking. This concept and environmental example is the Praxis of letting everyone choose their own systematic approach to problem solving. I’ve noticed a lot of interlinking connections between the terms I’ve been introduced to only today and how they relate to the Praxis concept of theory application in practice.

Next I will explore these and the Behaviourism, Cognitivism and Constructivism theories more deeply and as I studied these in Psychology A-level, I have a really keen interest in the strengths, as well as ethical and methodological issues of these theories. On a final note, this year I’ve committed myself and my conscience to better and more in depth study skills. The days of playing Fifa over further research are gone and the course, and the future generation of children I come into contact with deserve a teacher, who has that clear Praxis connection established and is better in what they are a master of their discipline in.

Reference: Freire, P. (1972) ‘banking theory’ 

Alex 🙂


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5 Responses to Education! What is it?

  1. A nice summary of today’s session Alex, and one that is likely to be very useful for all your classmates. I like the way you have woven theories such as Vygotskiian social constructvist theory, and Freire’s banking concept into your discussion. Well done – a great start.

  2. Pingback: Education! What is it?

  3. Jose Luis says:

    True reflection on what Education should be. I have posted part of your writing on my blog ( ) in order to disseminate it among Spanish students (with your permission, of course). I am sure will have a significant impact on your students when you become a teacher. Keep it up!
    Say hi to Steve Wheeler. I have had the valuable experience of sharing some time/lectures with him a while ago.

  4. Steve Tweeted this this evening. Thanks; a good example of consolidating your learning by writing about it: what I use my blog for, too!

  5. adruce says:

    Yes my pleasure Jose. Happy to have it shared amongst your students and yes I plan to do it more this year for my own reflection.

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