24 September 2014
Merriam Webster defines education as “a field of study that deals with the methods and problems of teaching.” There are many different types of teaching methods, but for now attention will be focused on just two. One being the banking concept, and the other being problem posing. The banking concept of education is a term coined by Brazilian pedagogue and educational theorist Paulo Freire in order to describe the traditional system of education; by comparing it to a system of depositing in which the teacher is the depositor and the students are the depositories. Problem posing on the other hand (also coined by Freire) is a method in which both are simultaneously teachers and students. Unlike the banking concept it actually challenges students to contemplate ideas outside of those that are normally forced upon the masses, and achieve a state of mind that Freire calls “critical consciousness.”
Critical consciousness focuses on achieving a deeper understanding of the world and how everything operates. It also includes taking action against the oppressive ideas that are taught to students in the banking concept. The only way to achieve critical consciousness is through the problem posing method of education. It is the key to the liberation of the human mind.
The philosophy and movement of Freire’s preferred method of education is known as Critical Pedagogy. Ira Shor, associate of Paulo Freire and one of the leading exponents of Critical Pedagogy, identifies its principal goals as follows: “when pedagogy and curricular policy reflect egalitarian goals, they do what education can do:
I. Oppose socialization with de-socialization
II. Choose critical consciousness over commercial consciousness
III. Transformation of society over reproduction of inequality
IV. Promote democracy by practicing it and by studying authoritarianism
V. Challenge student withdrawal through participatory...