Blog #5 9/13/15
This is the hardest assignment to date. We were to read Paulo Freire’s The "Banking Concept" of Education. This article was a tough read and I tried to interact with the text as I always do. I spent time looking up words, marking thoughts I found interesting, and researching who Paulo Freire was. The problem-posing technique to education does seem valid to me. I understand it to be more of showing the world and having people learn from it what they can vs. the Banking concept which shows what someone else found to be true. Each day scientists spend their time researching a field of interest until nothing further is to be found. They publish articles, books and documentaries and call it all fact. Who is to say that the facts found were not solely based on the way they saw it? This is the concept of problem posing education, assisting people to see the world as only then can, and challenge their thoughts of it. I was just explaining to my mother how tough of a read this article was, and I was able to explain the Banking concept fluently. I believe Freire said it the best and I will quote him “Narration leads the students to memorize mechanically the narrated content. Worse yet, it turns them into containers into receptacles to be filled by the teacher. The more completely she fills the receptacles, the better a teacher she is. The more meekly the receptacles permit themselves to be filled, the better students they are.” In my margin this was marked as interesting because I see this being practiced with my 8 year old son. "Memorization is key to multiplication and division” was a statement his teacher made last week at open house. Is this truly the only way to have an 8 year old know how to do multiplication? Even for that fact was this something someone dumped into her receptacle or her own judgement of the easiest way to learn times tables? The banking concept was easier to understand I think because our society has practiced it for so long, that many scenarios through elementary school came to mind as I was reading. The problem-posing concept was a little more difficult to understand. I know with Freire he was introducing this to adults in a country that was poverty stricken. So does this concept only work with adults who already have an understanding of the world around them? Which then leads me to a firm believing that I have had for years, children only know what they are taught. Can we utilize this method in our younger children to encourage critical thinking at a younger age or do they need a firm understanding of the basics. My interpretation of the reading is you can’t have it both ways. I wonder how someone can critically think for themselves, even with a mentor to share knowledge with, if there is no firm knowledge of the basics. This reading alone created more questions than answers. I saw Freire’s position come to life in my head. Before I knew it Mr. Google and I were searching about this concept. So my mind wanted more then was assigned. I realized I was not a receptacle and could not complete this assignment solely on one article, written by one man. Paulo Freire may have given great significance to this concept; other innovated individuals took his work and went further into the study of it. I think this is a topic of our professor’s current work. I am excited to see where this concept goes and to answer my own questions on the topic.
Pease see the other references I started reading. Might help with the understanding. I think Wiki, an article written by Mary E. Boyce and a video posted on prezi.com helped me have a better understanding of what Freire was explaining.