This last reading by Shor was a great read to sum up and conclude all we have learned this semester.
"The teacher plays a key role in the critical classroom. Student participation and positive emotions are influenced by the teacher's commitment to both. One limit to this commitment comes from the teacher's development in traditional schools where passive, competitive, and authoritarian methods dominated"(Shor 26).
There is nothing worse than having a teacher who is not interested in what they are teaching. I have had teacher's during high school who were not interested in their job and what they were teaching. It made the class drag on every time and I never felt like I fully understood the material because it was not taught in depth or with the care it should have been taught with. I just barely passed a class with a teacher like this because I could not get engaged because the teacher was not.
"If the students' task is to memorize rules and existing knowledge, without questioning the subject matter or the learning process, their potential for critical thought and action will be restricted"(Shor 12).
In school's today, it is all about teaching by the guidelines given which limits teachers. The student's should be taught beyond those guidelines into the world and their society. Pushing them to think beyond the guidelines will in fact increase their ability to think critically and maybe to even open their eyes to an event in the world that they were not aware of. I took a class in high school that strictly discussed and interpreted the current events in the world and our society. We would break down certain events and talk about them and tie them back to what we were learning in our history class.
If the teacher does not attempt to get their students into conversation and making the classroom friendly and safe, they will not show their full knowledge. In FNED, Dr. Bogad has made the class easy to participate in without feeling nervous. In one of my other classes, I rarely ever participate if at all. The teacher never initiated any want or care for participation so at this point I would feel out of place participating in the class.
** In a way, this reading reminded me of the piece we read by Gerri August, Safe Spaces. The reading by August is about safe spaces in a classroom for the LGBT community and this can connect to a safe classroom in all aspects. Classrooms need to feel safe for students to be able to learn and this can be provided by the teachers and the way schools are run.
Points to discuss in class:
I enjoyed reading this piece and felt like I learned a lot from it. It is very important that students feel like they can participate in a class and that the teacher is engaged in what he/she is teaching. A class can be very boring if the teacher is not engaged in what they are doing.. the students often lose focus.