The assigned reading for this learning experience was written by Paolo Freire and it focused on the banking system of education. The banking system of education can be described as when the teacher is seen as a “dictator” over the classroom that does not allow their students any say in the class. It is said in the reading that the banking system leads children to “memorize mechanically the narrated account”, which basically means the students are being lectured at and expected to memorize everything that is being said. A result of this forced memorization is quite detrimental to a student because this style does not allow for students to be able to apply what they learned to anything in the real world. They strictly memorize and sometimes forget once they are tested on the presented materials. This style of teaching and learning is not seen as good because it is not treating students like people. They are said to be “empty vessels” a couple times in the article and that is quite sad because children are going to school to learn and fill up their heads with knowledge, and the banking system does not do that.
The article then shifts into talking about a solution to the banking system of education and the benefits of that. This solution is called the problem-posing system of education. In this style, the students and teachers are seen as equals in the classroom. It is described in the article that “people develop their power to perceive critically the way they exist in the world with which and in which they find themselves”. This can be interpreted as students are able to decide what they learn and are able to have and formulate their own opinions. In the problem-posing style, the students and teacher collaborate in course materials and sometimes the teacher can learn from the perspectives of their students, which is a great thing. Also, through this style students are able to actually learn and relate things to real world problems that are going on, which can help them throughout their whole lives. Also, through the problem posing style, students have a sense of worth. The teacher is valuing what each of their students has to say and this is how all students should feel because their opinion does matter. They are able to be treated as people, unlike the banking system treats children.
My learning community decided to focus on both styles of teaching and we wanted to give everyone in class a good understanding of each of them. So to do this we wrote stories that had different scenarios and had drawings to illustrate these stories, which is very “Freire” because he would illustrate or make cartoons to teach students about things. Then after we illustrated these two stories, we gave a brief slide or two on some of the main points to get out of the story to make sure everyone was on the same page. Then to wrap up the learning experience, we did a discussion which allowed our classmates to draw like Tanner did and we had everyone explain what their ideal learning drawing or group of adjectives meant to them. I contributed to this learning experience in a few different ways. First I was helping everyone brainstorm how we should write the stories we read aloud in class. I also was able to pull the main ideas out of each story and describe them to the class as a refresher to make sure they were understanding the main points my learning community was wanting everyone to understand. I also helped formulate the discussion questions like everyone else in my learning community did.
Overall, I think this learning experience went off really well and we were getting some great feedback from our fellow classmates at the end of the presentation. I think how we drew things was able to keep everyone’s attention and keep them engaged throughout our whole presentation.