Philosophical Theories and Education
PhilosophicalTheories and Education
Ofall human endeavors, education is the noblest and necessary.Education enables individuals to achieve their fullest physical,mental, personal, social and spiritual potentials. Education is notreligiously impartial it is based either on a secular footing orabsolute biblical truth. Religiously, education is an endless chaseto attain the fullest wisdom that God destined for us. On the otherhand, education is a constant learning process that can happen in aninfinite variety of context and circumstances. Although Christiansand social Reconstructionist advocate for education, their focus canbe slightly different to Christians, education includes thedevelopment of wisdom and understanding based on the scriptures whileto Social Reconstructionist education concentrates on a socialaction on actual problems. This paper seeks to articulate how socialreconstructionism is aligned and supported by biblical philosophiesof education.
Natureof the Learner
Socialreconstructionism is an education philosophy refers to a method ofteaching that purposes to bringing change in society and boostingstudents to query social inequalities. It allows discussion ofcontroversial issues in class and endorses an understanding ofdiverse perspectives. The learner is the chief focus of all classroomactivities, and the student is expected to work on improving thesociety. The primary goal of students is to eliminate socialinjustices. The community is full of issues such as poverty, globalwarming, racism and environmental pollution all these results frommisinformation and ignorance. Therefore, it is the student`s duty tolearn all they can grasp in school to make the world a better place.They are the future generation thus the need to strive for socialequality (Pezone & Singer, 2013).
SocialReconstructionist groups the students according to their commoninterests. Further, the students are involved in laying out changeswhich they feel should be implemented. Social Reconstructionist wantschanges in education systems, to raise students who will overcomeoppression and improve human conditions. The students have theability to use technology for the benefit of the society. Forinstance, social media can be used to preach about peace, respect,and equality. Social Reconstructionist also emphasizes the importanceof students learning through practical experience. Students learn howto bring positive change to the society. Most people are onlyconcerned with their individual need which is selfish, thus socialReconstructionist wants the students to achieve equality in thesociety. They should care for the less fortunate and fight forjustice for all and not just for those with money, those who canbribe their way out of a situation (Pezone & Singer, 2013).
Correspondingly,in Christian educational process, the learner presents a challengeeach person brings a set of goals, wants and needs. Each learner isin search of personal and spiritual fulfillment and growth. A studentis considered as a person of great worth just as God finds Hispeople. The learner is expected to discover the truth through thehelp of the Holy Spirit and the teacher. It is only the Holy Spiritthat can penetrate the student`s, heart. The learner is further onrequired to pass on the knowledge he acquires to future generations.The student follows the example of Christ he desires to be likeChrist and lives to glorify God, as can be seen, Christian educationaims at making students more like God. They should imitate Him andpreach the truth which they discover. On the other hand, SocialReconstructionism aims at instilling knowledge to the students sothat they can bring social changes to the society (Goheen, 2013).
Learningis the course by which people acquires skills, knowledge, andattitudes that are essential to meet the life`s demands. Educationalso means the change in behavior as a result of experience gained.People learn from all sides from parents, media, environment,teachers and nature. Learning is an ongoing process people encounternew situations every day that brings change in one`s life. Forinstance today one may undergo hunger and tomorrow encounterterrorism both cases present a learning process on how to deal withsuch issues. Needless to say, there are problems plaguing schoolswhich are a result of how the society is organized. The currenteconomy is competitive individuals and businesses persistently seekhigher profits and people at the bottom of the economy are regardedas failures. People do not feel obliged to pay taxes for the socialgood of the nation. It is no surprise that most school systems aredesigned to sort students out and at the same time leave othersuneducated. It is sad that schools teach social inequality andcompetitive behavior. It is for this reason that socialReconstructionist and Christian educators feel the need to improvelearning in school. They believe it will be a struggle to achieve amore equitable society and that students must take part in the fight.The teachers have no choice but to encourage learners to work forsocial change. Education is necessary so that ordinary citizens canhave a chance to participate in the process of defending andimproving their liberties. Learning prepares people to become goodcitizens, people who will bring social changes in the society(Pethel, 2013).
Furthermore,learning stimulates people to be curious why things happen and whatcan be done to change what is not right. Education thus provides hopefor future generations. However, that dream can only be achieved byengaging students in critiquing social injustice and challengingoppression. Additionally, learning promotes dialogue which enablesstudents to gain collective knowledge to use in improving thesociety. The teacher asks questions that aid students in identifyingthe problems in their communities. The world is brought to theclassroom through learning. Students and educators discuss theproblems facing the society and how to overcome them. For instance,the inflation is a problem facing almost the whole world. Studentscome up with ideas of how to improve the economy and how to controlinflation (Sadker & Zittleman, 2013).
Roleof the Teacher
SocialReconstructionist believes that in educational systems, the studentshave no connection between what they are taught about the world, andhow the world works. Most people are ignorant about these links theybecome open to manipulation, influence and eventually oppression. Itis believed that students are not well prepared to function in aswiftly changing world. According to Reconstructionist, thetraditional education systems create self-fulfilling individuals.Therefore, it is the teacher`s role to break the power often held bythe elite classes commonly the wealthy and white people. The teachershould give priority to all regardless of the race or color. Also,teachers should organize lessons that inform intellectually andemotionally stir students to thinking about the inequities aroundthem and how to solve them (Sadker & Zittleman, 2013).
Itis the teacher`s role to teach students in ways that are personallymeaningful to them. For instance, students can be asked to talk aboutthe implication of terrorism and how they can prevent it. Throughthis, they can come up with ideas that can assist in future whenfaced with such a problem. Furthermore, a teacher must be bold andconfidence even when presenting studying materials that may becontroversial. The teacher`s role is to create a democraticenvironment whereby issues will be debated and discussed. Thestudents must believe that their opinion matters and they can bringpositive changes to the world. The teacher should make them feelconfident and emphasize on how important they are to the futuregeneration. Once the confidence is instilled in them, students willgo out of their way and think critically of ways to make the societya better place for example, ways to end social injustices andoppression (Murrow, 2012).
InChristian schools, teachers have a close relationship with JesusChrist. It is the role of the teacher to lead the students to do theright thing as required by the Bible. The teacher is mostly concernedwith making the students know God, leading to salvation. The teacheralso instills good character traits and moral principles in thestudent the students receive strong life skills. The teacher`sresponsibility is to make the students discover the truth God hasgiven a man the ability to acquire knowledge through critical reason,scientific observation, intuitive insight and empirical observation.We can say that the biblical and social reconstruction roles of ateacher are almost similar because the teachers teach the students onhow to impact positive social changes in the society. Some people mayargue that the Biblical approach focuses on bringing people closer toGod. As much as this is true, we cannot deny the fact Christianeducation teachers desire to give rise to a generation where equity,unity, self -sacrifice and love is in abundance. Both Christianschool teachers and social Reconstructionist teachers want to raisefuture leaders who will bring an end to social injustices and otherevils such as terrorism. They help the students understand themselvesand create a good relationship with others. They also listen tostudents` voices it enables them to discover what concerns them andwhat has a deeper meaning to the students (Collier, 2013).
ThePurpose of Schooling
Accordingto Christian education, the ultimate aim of a school is to equipstudents to comprehend the truth about life and their place in theworld. To understand these truths, students need to have a deepermeaning and purpose of life. Christian schools seek to instillchildren to recognize Christ`s presence in all areas of learning andto obey by responding to His call to transform the society. On theother hand, the purpose of schooling in respect to socialreconstruction is to bring about social reforms. Educationalinstitutions are the means through which students learn how torebuild the systems that will do away with oppression,marginalization, and inequality. Through schooling, learners areempowered to question the existing systems to create a just andequitable society. Social Reconstructionist believes that educationteaches students the importance of critical thinking and ofresponding to social problems such as discrimination, hunger,violence, and poverty. The empowerment to bring about social changebegins at school. Restructuring educational systems to ensure thatlearner`s surface better equipped to deal with problems, values, andideologies are of primary importance. Further on, schooling empowersstudents through creating awareness of several main social issues,engaging in meaningful dialogue, student questioning and enquiringoutside- the- class experiences. All these lead to self-developmentand understanding of others (Sadker & Zittleman, 2013).
Also,schooling is necessary since it is from there that people gain skillsand knowledge. Students get to learn science, mathematics, arts,religion, politics and economics these areas teach people how toreason. Through schooling, individuals can decide on the kind ofworld they want to live in and how to achieve that. Througheducation, man can control other powers and can use for histransformation. For instance, by studying science, one can learn howto perform surgery this assists in prolonging the life of the otheror taking away their pain. Schooling also instills discipline andself-respect in people. Through this, individuals will have respectfor their life and will not engage in harmful practices such as drugsor fights. The results will be, living in a peaceful world. Throughschooling, students learn and discover what transpired in the pastthey learn the history and cultures of various nations and thenanalyze the data hence enabling them to make better decisions for thegood of all humankind (Schiro, 2013).
Thepurpose of a school curriculum is to prepare students for the nextstage in their development and learning, but also to allow forengagement between teachers and students raising the desire forstudents to learn more. A school curriculum includes everything thatgoes on in the school, not just the teaching. In most cases, studentsattend school since it is mandatory. However, teachers should makeschools enjoyable they should teach students on how to bring changeto the society. They should always remind the students that they arethe community`s future and everyone is looking up to them to bringequality and justice (Pezone & Singer, 2013).
SocialReconstructionist considers education to be a means to transform thesociety into a moral, just, empowering and satisfying for everyone.Therefore, students need to be taught to become analytical andcritical thinkers. They must also be made conscious of socialinjustices in the world. Teachers have the duty to vest upon studentsthe desire to modify the culture where they perceive it fails.Teachers should expose students to real life issues they should go astep further from the book and enlighten students on real lifeissues. For instance, students can be taught how to end socialinjustices in the society. The teachers can inform them on how toconduct fair trade and how to participate in charities to help thepoor. Correspondingly, Christian education teaches people theimportance of respect, honesty, and love. Once people love eachother, they will be just they will want to treat each other fairly.Issues of violence, inequality will not be experienced once peoplelove and respect each other. By desiring to be more like God, therich will share what they have with the less fortunate. As much associal reconstruction and Christian education may differ, they havethe same goal of making the society a great place for all. Bothspread the message of justice and equality for all (Collier, 2013).
Inconclusion, both social reconstruction and biblical philosophies ofeducation work towards achieving the same goal. They both want toraise students as a future generation with a difference. The studentsare expected to put an end to social injustices in the society, torespect one another and to fight for equality for all. Further,educators in Christian schools and secular school encourage learnersto bring change to the society as future leaders, students shouldpurpose to put an end to evils such as racism, discrimination,violence, and other injustices.
Collier,J. (2013). Modelsof Christian Education.TEACH Journal of Christian Education, 7(1), 2.
Goheen,M.W. & Bartholomew, C.G. (2013). ChristianPhilosophy:ASystematic and Narrative Introduction. Michigan:Baker Publishing Group
Murrow,S.E. (2012). Depictingteachers` roles in social reconstruction in the social frontier,1934-1943. Educational Theory, 61(3), 311-333. Retrieved fromhttp://0-search.proquest.com.athens.iii.com/education/docview/881045986/13D6FDF7599D524E93/1?accountid=8411>.
Pethtel,G. J. (2013).Christian Education in the 21st Century:Renewing a Transformational Vision.
Pezone,M., & Singer, A. (2013).Education for Social Change: From Theory to Practice.Workplace: A Journal for Academic Labor, (10).
Sadker,D. M., & Zittleman K. R. (2013). Teachers, schools, and societyninth edition. New York: McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
Schiro,S. M. (2013). CurriculumTheory: Conflicting Visions and Enduring Concerns(2nd Ed). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.
No related posts.