Should teachers put students to the driver’s seat?

Teaching in Finland

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One of the most recurring ideas in teaching concerns the role of students and teachers. Progressive teaching methods advocate student-centric approaches, whereas traditional models promote teacher-led teaching. Which one works the best?

Having read an article in Education Week, in which a teacher with 29-years of experience criticised overusing student-centric methods in teaching, I decided to tackle this topic. The article makes several claims about what happens with regards to teaching when students are put to the driver’s seat (marked in bold). In italics you’ll find my reflection on the claims.

  • Fun over function, cosmetic engagement over actual learning
    One might wonder do teachers test out various student-centric teaching methods focusing overly on fun rather than practicality?
    If students are seemingly active or busy in the classroom, how can we verify they’re actually learning? Is it just easy to believe learning is taking place then? (Related see also…

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